Tuesday, September 30, 2014
Posted By: Nomonanoto Sidama | At: 9/30/2014 07:25:00 AM
ዶ/ር ቤታና ሆጤሶ በሲዳማ ታሪክ ላይ ያደረጉት ወይይት፦
Posted By: Nomonanoto Sidama | At: 9/30/2014 07:12:00 AM
An interview with Ashenafi Argaw, an export manager for the Sidama Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union, revealed the toll coffee has had on farmers and the rest of the population. He quotes a farmer telling him, “I depend on coffee for all clothing, food, to pay taxes and medical expenses. Our lives depend on coffee. . . Ten years ago I was producing seven sacks of red cherry, and this was enough to buy clothes, medicines and services. But now, even if I sell four times as much, it is impossible to cover all my expenses . . . Three of the children can’t go to school now because I can’t afford the uniform . . . We have stopped buying teff and edible oil. We are eating just mainly corn.”
The Toll of Coffee on Ethiopia’s Trade and More
The overall trade of Ethiopia is suffering profusely. They have an incredibly high trade deficit of -2810.70 US Million (http://www.tradingeconomics.com/ethiopia/balance-of-trade). The current environmental and political status of the country is working against its trade. Ethiopia is one of the few African countries that does not have oil and is not rich in natural resources. The country relies on the export of primary resources as means of sustaining the economy. The resource that the country relies on the most for economic development is coffee. Coffee has always been Ethiopia’s strongest resource. Many people consider Ethiopia as the birth place of this resource. It is the only place where coffee plants have been found to grow natively. According to Economic Watch’s article, “Ethiopia Trade, Exports and Imports”, coffee counts for about 65% of the country’s foreign exchange. The article also claims that coffee “engages almost 25% of the working population and contributes 10% to the national production data”. Even though Ethiopia has been benefiting from this crop, it still remains as one of the poorest countries in Africa.
Coffee has been exploited by foreign investors and companies. Farms and workers continue to be paid slave labor wages. The Ethiopian economy does not gain nearly enough capital from export sales. One high profile company that is caught in claims of exploiting workers is none-other than the beloved Starbucks. The Ethiopian government has been working to trademark three types of coffee beans, but Starbucks has been working against this and has in turn denied farmers about $90 million a year(http://www.economist.com/node/8355026).
|Ashenafi Argaw, an export manager for the Sidama Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union|
photo from SGI Quarterly.org
Due to social and political conflicts in the country, coffee prices dropped greatly in 1998 and struggled to become revived. Many farmers had to abandon land and head to the cities. Some farmers were forced to take up different work like cotton and sesame farming because they were unable to afford production of coffee. An interview with Ashenafi Argaw, an export manager for the Sidama Coffee Farmers Cooperative Union, revealed the toll coffee has had on farmers and the rest of the population. He quotes a farmer telling him, “I depend on coffee for all clothing, food, to pay taxes and medical expenses. Our lives depend on coffee. . . Ten years ago I was producing seven sacks of red cherry, and this was enough to buy clothes, medicines and services. But now, even if I sell four times as much, it is impossible to cover all my expenses . . . Three of the children can’t go to school now because I can’t afford the uniform . . . We have stopped buying teff and edible oil. We are eating just mainly corn.” (http://www.sgiquarterly.org/feature2006Oct-7.html) The coffee industry has also destroyed a lot of the rainforests that still exist in the country known for it’s droughts. But there has been an even greater development of conservation initiatives started by major coffee producers as well as other crop producers.
Ethiopians rely heavily on unofficial means of cross-border trading as well. Around $250-$300 million US is made yearly through cross border trade (Sara Pavanello: Working across borders – Harnessing the potential of cross-border activities to improve livelihood security in the Horn of Africa drylands. London: Overseas Development Institute). They trade different livestock such as cattle, camels, sheep, and goats with countries like Somalia and Djibouti, and Kenya. This level of trade is headed by nomadic pastoralists. This trades helps with border relations, lowers food prices, and helps increase food security. Trade has sculpted borders in the sense that some indigenous communities are allowed to travel where the general population cannot. In vice versa, tension has arisen due to countries disliking this unauthorized travel.
The Ethiopian online newspaper called News Business Ethiopia posted an interesting article about the role of trade for small, marginalized tribes like the Shekas and Menjas. These tribes have been forced to live in dense forest in Ethiopia. They have been forced to adapt to a pastoralist lifestyle to survived. The Menjas’ have survived on trading charcoal and firewood with the Shekas. Gradually their lifestyles are degrading the environment because they are clearing a lot of trees for firewood. Efforts to change this means of trade in order to preserve the environment has resulted in organizations teaching the tribes how to grow their own crops. These crops can will ultimately be used for trade. Critics wonder if this push for change is more for the benefit of spreading modernization.
Monday, September 29, 2014
Posted By: Nomonanoto Sidama | At: 9/29/2014 05:39:00 PM
(Reuters) - A gunman opened fire during a protest on the Ethiopian Embassy grounds on Monday, according to a video of the incident, but no injuries were reported.
A spokesman for the U.S. Secret Service said it had detained a possible shooter after a report at about 12:15 p.m. EDT (1615 GMT) that shots were fired near the embassy in northwest Washington, D.C.
Witnesses said the gunfire took place inside the embassy compound during a protest against the Horn of Africa nation's government.
"About half a block from the embassy, I heard at least four shots, and I thought there were people killed," demonstrator Tesfa Simagne told Reuters Television.
A video taken inside the embassy gates and carried by the website of Ethiopian Satellite Television shows a man wearing a dark suit and brandishing a silver handgun.
He points the weapon at others who argue with him and fires a single shot. Still waving the gun and arguing with protesters, the man backs up to an embassy door and goes inside.
A separate video made by a protester and provided to Reuters showed a bullet hole in the windshield of a car protesters said was outside the embassy gates.
A State Department official, who spoke on condition of anonymity, also said that no one was hurt. The person believed to have fired the shots turned himself in to authorities, and no arrests were made because he has diplomatic immunity, the official said.
Repeated phone calls to the embassy went unanswered.
Posted By: Nomonanoto Sidama | At: 9/29/2014 08:00:00 AM
ዛሬ በኢንቴርናሽናል ጆርናል ኦፍ ፑብሊክ ሄልዥ ሳይንስ መጽሔት ላይ የወጣ ኣንድ ጥናት እንዳመለከተው በሲዳማ ዞን ቦርቻ ወረዳ ባለፈ ኣንድ ኣመት ውስጥ ልጅ ከወለዱ እናቶች መካከል 4 ነጥብ 9 ከመቶ የምሆኑት ብቻ በጤና ማዕከላ በሰለጠኑ የህክምና ባለሙያዎች ታግዘው የወለዱ ሲሆን፤ የተቀሩት ያለ ህክምና ባለሙያዎች እርዳታ መውለዳቸው ታውቋል።
ባለፈው ኣንድ ኣመት ውስጥ ልጅ የወለዱትን ከ540 በላይ እናቶች ባሳተፈው በዚህ ጥናት ላይ እንደተገለጸው፤ የቦርቻ ወረዳ እናቶች ከወልድ ጋር በተያያዘ በምከሰቱ ችግሮ ላይ ያላቸው ግንዛቤ ዝቅተኛ ከመሆኑ በላይ በጤና ጉዳዮቻቸው ላይም ውሳኔ የመውስድ ኣቅም ውስን መሆኑ ተመልክቷል።
የቦርቻ ወረዳ የማዋለጃ የጤና ማእከላትን ሽፋን የመጨመር እና በጤና ማዕከላት የመውለድ ኣስፈላጊነት ላይ የእናቶች ግንዛቤ የማሳደግ ስራ በስፋት መስራት እንደምገባ ጥናቱ በማጠቃለያው ላይ ኣመልክቷል።
Factors associated with Institutional delivery in Boricha district of Sidama zone, southern Ethiopia
Tafese Tadele Gudura, Alemu Tamiso Debiso, Dr. Tariku Tadele Gudura
Background: Every year, 40 million women give birth at home without the help of a skilled birth attendant. In 2011, 287,000 women died during pregnancy or childbirth. Almost all these deaths occur in developing countries where mothers and children lack access to basic health care. Reports showed the low utilization of health facility for delivery service in Ethiopia. This study aimed to determine the utilization and factors influencing institutional delivery. Methods: Community based cross sectional study was conducted from January to February 2013/14 in Boricha District of Southern Ethiopia among mothers who gave birth in the last 1 year. Multistage sampling techniques were used to collect data from 546 mothers. Result: Taking in to account place of birth for the last child, only 4.9% women gave birth in a health facility. Women’s education level (AOR=4.4 (95% CI=1.36-14.33)), timing of first ANC visit (AOR= .03 (95% CI=0.004 - 0.205)), women’s advice to deliver in a health facility during ANC (AOR = 31.15 (95% CI=2.02- 479.52)), women’s knowledge of birth related complications (AOR= 12.4 (95% CI=2.67-57.16)) and decision making power (AOR=0.2 (95% CI=0.06-0.82)) showed significant association with institutionional delivery. Conclusion: Institutional delivery in the study area was found to be very low. Raising awareness on institutional delivery to maximize delivery service utilization and strengthening provision of education and counseling to deliver in health facility during antenatal care visits at individual and community level should be given due emphasis.
Posted By: Nomonanoto Sidama | At: 9/29/2014 07:15:00 AM
If coffee growing was an Olympic event, it'd be a marathon not a sprint. And not just because Africa totally dominates. Being a coffee superpower requires years of economic, infrastructural, and government investment. Plus a bean-friendly terrior, farmers dedicated to quality control, and a trust in industry buyers to bring the beans to the masses.
So, which countries shell out the best beans? To get an idea, we asked a group of 11 roasters and writers to weigh in. Obviously, with all of the variables involved, naming favorite countries is not an easy task. Almost all of our contributors expressed hesitation about throwing their hat into the ring (too much Deadly Grounds, perhaps), and one roaster even pulled their choices for fear of upsetting their farmers.
Naturally, personal bias in taste, education, and life experience influence one's picks, but by polling a diverse cross-section of the coffee world, we feel like this is an honest pulse of the industry, as taken from some of its finest minds. Dare we say 'definitive'? To the dismay of the comments section, we dare. Here are the results, with the reasoning below.