New Foreign and Defence Ministers Appointed

18 Apr 2019

Parliament approves nominations of Gedu Andargachew and Lemma Megersa to Foreign Affairs and Defence portfolios

As part of efforts to further accelerate the root and branch reforms taking place in Ethiopia, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed appointed new ministers in a minor reshuffle of his cabinet today (18th October).

The new announcements saw Gedu Andargachew, formerly President of the Amhara Regional State, named as the new Minister of Foreign Affairs, replacing the outgoing Minister, Dr Workneh Gebeyehu, who had served since 2016 and was recently appointed as Director-General of the United Nations Office in Nairobi.

Ethiopia’s new Foreign Minister, H.E. Mr Gedu Andargachew

Additionally, Lemma Megersa, who was serving as President of the Oromia Regional State, was named the new Minister of Defence, replacing Engineer Ayisha Mohammed, who has returned to the Ministry of Urban Development and Construction as Minister.

According to Chala Lemi, Deputy Government Whip with the rank of State Minister, who presented the nominations to Parliament on behalf of the Prime Minister, these appointments were made to strengthen the Federal Government and to further advance the reforms at national level. He said that “as [Gedu Andargachew and Lemma Megersa] own the lion’s share of responsibility for the success of the reform process to date, it was seen as necessary to appoint them to the Federal Government in order to ensure the continuity of these reforms in strengthening national unity and maintaining the rule of law”.

The Prime Minister’s nominations were approved earlier this morning by the House of People’s Representatives.


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Gedu Andargachew has been a prominent political figure in Ethiopia over the last decade and has been an influential advocate for the reform process currently being spearheaded by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed. He has served as the Deputy Chairperson of the Amhara Democratic Party (ADP), previously known as the Amhara National Democratic Movement (ANDM), and President of the Amhara Regional State since December 2013. He previously served in various capacities within the Amhara Regional State Administration, including as Deputy President of the Region and Head of the Region’s Information Bureau.

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