The Ministry of Foreign Affairs in collaboration with the Office of the National Council for the Coordination of Public Participation to the Construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam made a two-day consultation with competing political parties and civic and religious institutions on issues related to the Grand Ethiopian renaissance dam.
Discussions, in particular, were focused on the status of the tripartite negotiations, the construction of the dam, and the support expected from the public.
H.E. Ambassador Dina Mufti, Spokesperson of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, and Dr. Aregawi Berhe, Director-General of the Office of the National Council for the Coordination of Public Participation to the Construction of the Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam co-chaired the forum.
Given the current unwarranted pressure on the country, the chairs underscored that Ethiopians should stand in unison to make the construction of the dam a reality.
Member of the GERD negotiating team H.E. Ambassador Ibrahim Idris and Engineer Gideon Asfaw tabled presentations on the genesis of the tripartite negotiation and the current status of the construction of the Grand Renaissance Dam respectively.
Dr. Belete Berhanu, a staff member of the Ministry of Water, Irrigation, and Energy, explained to the audience why Ethiopia needs to build this dam and what benefits it will bring to its citizens.
Participants of the forum reaffirmed their commitment to stand together as the issue of the dam is a common agenda.
Participants further appreciated the commitment of the government to consult on the flagship project as a manifestation of its desire to work together on the national agenda.
It was indicated that in addition to the political, intellectual, and other critical support, more than 15 billion Birr has been raised from Ethiopians at home and abroad.
Participants finally pledged that they will stand with the government to complete the remaining 20 percent of the construction of the dam.