Paper presented by Mehari Taddele Maru to the Political Parties Forum in March 2008
In this paper, I intend to examine the following five major issues:
- an overview of the federalist arrangement in Ethiopia since 1991 and how it is related to on-going devolution of power,
- the historical, legal and political justifications and economic development considerations forwarded for and against federal arrangement;
- the positive and negative aspects after a 17 years of experiment on federalism in Ethiopia in terms of its contribution peace and stability, human rights and justice, and its impact on economic performance;
- examine how much, and what kind, of power is formally by law (de jure) decentralized to the regional states and lower tiers of government (District); and
- assess if such power devolution indeed has been practically implemented (de facto) and have enhanced economic competition among, and performance of, the regional governments.