Azeb Mesfin lost TPLF’s cash cow

August 17, 2013

by Abebe Gellaw

The Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) has quietly removed the late dictator’s widow Azeb Mesfin from the helm of EFFORT as Chief Executive Officer a few months after her husband’s demise, it emerged.

Azeb, widely known as the ‘Queen of Mega’ and ‘mother of corruption’ among Ethiopians, had snatched  the reins of  power within the Endowment Fund for the Rehabilitation of Tigray (EFFORT) from her bitter rival Sibehat Nega and Abadi Zemo. She was once the de facto second in command in her husband’s tyrannical regime.Azeb, widely known as the ‘Queen of Mega’ and ‘mother of corruption’

The new boss appointed to as the Chief Executive Office (CEO) of TPLF’s multi-billion dollars business empire and corruption cash cow emerged to be Berhane Kidane Mariam Yihdego, a Central Committee member of the TPLF. According to informed sources, Berhane is a close confidant and business partner of Sebhat Nega, a multi-millionaire in his own right like most members of the TPLF ruling class.

Berhane, who enjoys multiple high profile positions as a privileged TPLF loyalist, was the former General Manager of TPLF’s propaganda mouthpiece Walta Information Center from 2006 up to last year. Besides being the President of the nepotistic and corruption-plagued Ethiopian Olympics Committee (EOC), he sits on the boards of Wegagen Bank, which is also owned by the TPLF, and Mekele University. The new EFFORT chief also claims to be the founder and Deputy Board Chairman of a private company called “Ethiopian Quality Award Organization,” according to his CV obtained by Addis Voice.

TPLF’s move to replace Azeb with the new loyalist was confirmed by Berhane himself who recently sent an updated CV and a profile to the Switzerland-based Association of National Olympic Committees (ANOC), where he represents Ethiopia as EOC president. In his profile posted on ANOC’s website, he listed his current professional position as “Board of Director and Chief Executive Officer of EFFORT Investment Group” since 2012. In spite of the fact that the exact month of his appointment was not mentioned nor made official, the ANOC website indicates that Berhane’s latest profile was updated on May 2, 2013. The French and Spanish versions of his profile web pages also carry exactly the same information.

EFFORT TPLF LOOTING MACHINESWalta reported recently that Berhane Kidanemariam, the new “Director of EFFORT and TPLF CC member conducted a successful meeting with the Diaspora in Seattle.” The meeting, hosted by the Union of Tigrians in North America (UTNA), focused on how EFFORT is implementing its objective of developing Tigray and making it self-reliant, it stated.

Heaping praise on its former boss, Walta promoted the corrupt conglomerate’s new chief as eloquent, persuasive and visionary. “Berhane Kidane Mariam, with his eloquent and persuasive ability, spelled out the objective of his presence in Seattle and explained the development in Tigrai and the role of EFFORT to uplift the hope and aspiration of many Tigrians from poverty to self-reliance,” Walta declared.

According to an insider, who confirmed the reshuffle, Azeb is deeply resented and despised among high-ranking TPLF leaders and her fall from grace and power has been quick and spectacular. The only playing card at her disposal is her husband’s foundation, which is not even given attention by the TPLF bigwigs. “Without her husband, she is like a fish out of water. Her survival among her rivals like the wicked Sibehat Nega will be short-lived. Losing TPLF’s blood-sucking machine is a big blow against Azeb,” the insider said.

Sibhat Nega has recently been quoted as saying that Meles is being used as a cover and a bargaining chip by some who are exaggerating his success as a ruler. The veteran TPLF strongman has been critical of those who tend to heap praise on Meles, whom he slashed to have betrayed the TPLF and endangered its unity by enforcing his will through his secretive inner circle.

Meanwhile, Azeb is demanding huge plots of land around the metropolis in the name of the Meles Zenawi foundation. “All the best land goes to the TPLF as usual. It seems the TPLF has subverted the revolutionary slogan “land to the tillers” with “land to the killers.” All the corrupt TPLF generals and officials have scrambled for the best land all over the country,” Yalem Zew, a political commenter said.

The late dictator appointed his wife to control the immense wealth of EFFORT in early 2009. EFFORT, the biggest business monopoly in Ethiopia, controls vast resources and over 60 companies in Ethiopia but TPLF claims that it is the exclusive asset of Tigrians by virtue of their ethnicity. The corrupt conglomerate has been widely criticized to have multi-billion birr loans from state banks written off and for engaging in blatant tax evasion enjoying “nonprofit” status as an endowment.

Ethiopian activists often mention the parasitic EFFORT as an example of TPLF’s apartheid policies that have deliberately created huge economic and political disparities between the Tigrian ruling class and the oppressed people of Ethiopia.

8 Responses to Azeb Mesfin lost TPLF’s cash cow

  1. ConcernedCitizen

    June 11, 2014 at 7:42 pm

    Dear Abebe Gelaw,
    I was not a big fan of yours and I was pissed at you while I was in Ethiopia… but once I stepped my foot in US, I have got a chance to read more of your articles and I have started admiring your informed articles about our dictators back home. It stroke me hard the point of “censorship” that held most of Ethiopians from knowing the truth. Keep up the good work and I am with you all the steps! Etiopia for Ethiopians!

  2. Selam

    September 2, 2013 at 2:15 am

    Endatitefa feru, she came recently to check her Virginia house!!


  3. Saba Solomon

    August 28, 2013 at 7:38 am

    My question is and i’m eager to know ???
    What the Pro-Democracy Opposition Groups are doing to Stop the looting of Ethiopia by this Solidily and effectively Organized and United one ethnic group thugs ??? who determined to rob loot and kill anyone who dare to Stop on their way of Looting Ethiopia as if there is No Tomorrow .
    TPLF made thousands of its member Multi-Millioniars just in less than 20 yrs -Ethiopia become the Sole Property of TPLF and its looting Wing known as EFFORT(Endowment Fund For The Rehabilitation of Tigrai) locally known as ” ye Tigrai Lemat” ,Which virtually Owens All gigantic Coroporations All over Ethiopia and Almost always “Win the bid” for the Governement and Forign investors Contracts.
    This Criminals must be Stopped and face justice for their heinous crime Spree and return the Looted billions of dollars of Ethiopia’s Wealth back to the Original owenerships:THE PEOPLE OF ETHIOPIA

  4. Hope

    August 17, 2013 at 5:39 pm

    Nothing surprise me anymore. In the last 25 yrs, time and time again, TPLF have proven themselves to Ethiopians that they don’t have love, respect and value for non-tplf Ethiopians. How can we expect any less from these group of people that have looted, incarcerated and massacred hundreds of thousands, if not millions Ethiopians? Mafias do what they do best to get to that dollar — they lie, cheat, manipulate, torture, kill and loot. It’s a matter of time, before TPLF start killing each other. Hallelujah!

  5. yemm

    August 17, 2013 at 1:54 pm

    The first thing Tigre people liberation front did when they marched to Addis abeba was to put all state corporations and private enterprises under the ownership of TPLF.

    Under the guise of privatisation, TPLF politbureau members overnight/immediately made themselves millionaires, looting and stealing the property of the state and making it their own private property.

    They soon renamed the Relief society of tigreai as EFFORT and all Ethiopian state property was transferred to be under the control of EFFORT.
    The names of the industries that were stolen and transferred to TPLF ownership were changes. some of them carry the name of the new owners, eg Mesfin engineering is the former Ethiopian metal etc..

    All that Ethiopia produces is now getting into the pockets of Tplf politbureau members. at the time of his death fascist Zenawi was one of the wealthiest ‘politicians’ at a looted wealth of $11 billion.

    His daugther HAS A COOL $5 BILLION in her account. The combined looted wealth of TPLF politbureau is estimated at $287 billion.

  6. Libyalew

    August 17, 2013 at 10:06 am

    Never mind, she can start her previous KOMARIT business in the desert of Sudan to sell Areke and Yalfela Tella including her body too.

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