(By Getahun S Gesso): I wanted to write this piece after hearing several discussions on different fora and media on what the decree of state of emergency in Ethiopia means? How it affects freedom of expression and of the press? How it interferes with opposition and political space? etc and how the decree should be understood from the stipulations in the constitution itself?
I recall trying to highlight some of the cardinal features of a decree for declaration of state of emergency in my recent article published on : What We Know and What We Don't About the Decree of State of Emergency in the Wake of the Ethiopian Protests and Irecha Massacre: What is the way forward? As it was written in the wake of the issuance of the state of emergency, it did not cover certain areas hoping that the actual decree would. However, the scanty Directive published by the government since left much to be desired. Thus, in this article I will further elaborate what can be covered by a decree of state of emergency and what cannot; the levels of authority for its issuance and administration; and a brief assessment of whether the constitution is complied with so far and the benefits of compliance.