The Federal government of Ethiopia has arrested prominent activist and media personality jawar Mohammed. Jawar who is a senior member of the opposition party Oromo Federalist Congress (OFG) was reportedly arrested together with Bekele Gerba a vocal veteran opposition activist.
The government has also shut Mr. Jawar’s media outfit Oromia Media Network, a move immediately condemned by activists and advocates of the free press. Media houses across the continent and human rights activists condemned the arrest and subsequent shutting down of the media and raised concerns of the arrest of the popular activist which they termed as ”pouring petrol on a burning fire”.
Jawar joined the OFG in December and is thought to be the most popular party in a region with the most populous community in Ethiopia. Their arrest comes after a popular singer and activist Hachallu Hundesa was yesterday shot dead in the capital Addis Ababa. They were arrested at the funeral of Mr Hachalu, a veteran freedom advocate and singer.