President Isaias Afwerki’s much heralded interview on EriTV on Saturday, 3 November, did little to assuage his critics. This assessment of the 80 minute long appearance is scathing. It concludes:

“The history of President Isaias Afwerki is the history of poor decisions and poor results.  Eritrea under his presidency has exiled 500,000 people to add to the 1,000,000 already exiled during the 30-year war of independence.  It has participated in 3-publicly known wars (with Yemen, Ethiopia and Djibouti) and 2 unknown wars (in Sudan and Congo.) It has poured millions from its meager resources to host Ethiopian armed opposition groups who had zero impact to the positive changes happening in Ethiopia.  It has poured millions more to Somalia only to acknowledge the internationally recognized government. It got the country sanctioned only to turn around and do everything that it was told to do to avoid sanctions: stop funding and providing political support to Somalia armed groups, recognize the Somalia government,  recognize and mediate your conflict with Djibouti, and talk to the Monitoring Group.  It has destroyed the country’s basic services (water, electricity), destroyed the banking system, destroyed the private sector, and worst of all, made nationalism synonymous with cruelty and harshness.

No narration or re-narration of Isaias Afwerki, no new patches or versions can change this reality.  Whether he knows it or not, his constant blaming of others for Eritrea’s failures is an admission that he was and is an inept executive. And, therefore, he must go.”


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