(RB), Amid heated negotiation between Addis Ababa and Cairo last week, Ethiopia citizens demand an immediate filling of Grand Ethiopia Renaissance Dam (GERD) as early as the first week of July 2020.
The massive campaign which began in the Amhara Region, the northern part of the country attracts millions of common citizens to join the hashtag #FilltheDam. #ItsMyDam. #GERD. #ItsOurDam.
Speaking to Ramciel Broadcasting from Addis Ababa, Ethiopia in regard to why the citizens are now demanding a quick fill-up of the dam while their government is on the negotiation table with the Cairo, Tesfya Bekele brushed it off saying,
“It is not the government’s dam. It is ours. The government does what we want. Listen, the issue of this dam is about our lives. We are spending billions of dollars into it and now some people somewhere feel like Ethiopia have no right to her resources. Come on now?.”
For decades, Cairo gained absolute control of the Nile water until recently, Ethiopia was to counter such a privilege. Several agreements have been negotiated but no positive results.
This week, Ethiopia announced that further issues surrounding the dam will be revisited in the first week of July, move seen by Sudan as something “positive” to look forward to.
Cairo considered the right to Nile water as natural and any threats to such is a direct threat to her national security. Millions of her people are at risk once Ethiopia starts to fill the dam. While for Addis Ababa, the dam is source of national progress and development. Any move to sabotage, is of great national concern.
Bekele, a businessman believed the issue is none debatable. And an effort to drill it will be met with a harsh response that may bring the two countries into total war. But he believes his government will do whatever it takes to secure a safe deal that will not bring war between the two sisterly countries.
Bekele, like many citizens in his country is also concerned about the Egyptians’ well-being. But he believed the narrative that Cairo cannot survive for more than 10 years with the amount of water planned to be reduced once the filling of the dam commenced, is not honest.
In recent months, the tension between Ethiopia and Egypt lightened into a new level with South Sudan centred herself in this conflict. Much has been reported about Cairo’s presence in South Sudan, a move the government denied.