What Happened: Ethiopia's ruling People's Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) has confirmed nationwide general elections will proceed in 2020, ending speculation that it could postpone the vote amid worsening security across the country and political infighting within the coalition, Reuters reported Aug. 10.
Why It Matters: The general elections will be a crucial test for Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and the ambitious reform plans he's been pursuing since coming into office in April 2018. The vote will come amid heightened political volatility that will likely result in renewed instability across the country as various factions jockey for power.
Background: Abiy assumed power in 2018 after long-standing protests in various areas of the country destabilized Ethiopia, forcing the EPRDF to nominate a more reform-minded candidate to undermine opposition strength. Abiy has since ushered in critical economic and political reforms, garnering significant attention from foreign powers and global investors.
- Is Abiy's Liberalization Push Too Much, Too Soon for Ethiopia? (June 26, 2019)
- Ethiopia Comes to a Crossroads on Economic Reform (April 3, 2019)
- Landlocked Ethiopia Charts a Course for a Navy (March 18, 2019)