Ethiopia: Tremors of Inflation Reaches the Army

According to reliable internal sources, rising worries about inflation in Ethiopia are sending shivers through many sectors of the society, including the very pillar the ruling party relies upon to cling to power.  The latest to feel the pinch and cry foul is the military. The source indicated that the army has lodged a request for a cost of living adjustment to stay afloat.

The price of basic necessities such as flour, onion, coffee, and sugar has skyrocketed. The government blamed the hike in prices on hoarding by greedy merchants. Following tough words by the Prime Minister, the business community in the capital is feeling under siege.

Within the last week alone, over 100 shops have been confiscated. To prevent the dire situation from snow balling into a political crisis pensioners are given 84 percent raise. There is also report of a 300 percent salary increase for civil servants.  Economists warn that this may fuel the already combustible situation rather than abate it. There is rumor about further devaluation of the birr.

To make matters worse, deepening political grievances compounded by increasing anxiety about a possible economic meltdown has prompted talk of a Tunisia style jasmine revolution in the capital, despite the total news blackout by the state-owned media.

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About the author

Hassen Hussein

Hassen Hussein, a writer, teaches Leadership and Management courses at the Saint Mary’s University of Minnesota and can be reached at hxhuss10@smumn.edu.

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