ADAMA, Ethiopia has set a good example to other countries in Africa in terms of freedom, liberty and rapid economic growth, a team of journalists from African countries said.

After visiting the place where Nelson Mandela took military training in Ethiopia, the South African journalist from eNCA, Sikelelwa Mdingi, said Ethiopia has rendered commendable contributions for the liberation of Africa.

Ethiopia will hopefully continue sharing good things with sisterly African countries as it’s the seat of the headquarters of AU and hence a hub of African politics, the journalist added.

Lauding the efforts made by the government in terms of economic transformation, Mdingi said “most importantly the people and government of Ethiopia are already in charge of the changes they want to see in their communities.

She also indicated that a lot has been done by the government and the private sector to improve Bishoftu town (a 45-minutes drive from Addis Ababa) and its environs to make it an absolutely stunning tourist destination.

“One thing I must also say is that Ethiopians are warm people and made us feel at home,” she said.

Expressing what she saw, the journalist said “had I not come here, I would not have been able to understand that you have got a beautiful and diverse country.”

Mdingi was in particular excited by the housing projects the government is building for citizens.

“This is really commendable,” she said, adding that “we are just looking the differences between this country and ourselves in South Africa; and our government can learn from the Ethiopian government how it could run such projects.”

Mdingi and the other journalists also visited the 656-km trans-boundary railway stretching from Ethiopia to Djibouti.

“I think the railway will introduce a dramatic change in the economic development of Ethiopia and the neighboring countries. It would be part of the railway network that could stretch from eastern to western part of Africa,” she predicted.

Referring to this trip organized for the journalists by the Ethiopian Embassy in South Africa, Mdingi said “the most important lesson we got here is that sometimes you actually have to let people come into your home to learn more about your home, to understand about your home, so that they can have other people from around the world, around the continent to have a better view of that country.”

Another journalists who visited the Bole Lemi Industrial Park and the Metals and Engineering Corporation (METEC), Botswanan journalist Mpho Therego said “one thing that I have realized now is that the country is doing exceptionally well in terms of investment and growth; and I wish other countries could come here and benchmark how to do it.”

Therego said all Africans need to promote business to grow their economy like what Ethiopia is doing through the untapped market of industrial parks.

The reporter from Botswana, however, stressed that “as a growing market Ethiopia needs to spread its wings; they start home before they go out.”

Speaking about the Ethiopian economy, the South African journalist Mbaknhle Mthethwa said “I understand that the country has been growing quite exponentially and we want to see it at first hand.”

Talking about the nation’s Growth and Transformation Plan, Mthethwa stated that the government has put in place policies which stimulate and initiate the economy; and which they certainly did.


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