Ministry Orders Indefinite Closure of AAU
Addis Ababa, April 18 (WIC)- The Ministry of Education has announced the indefinite closure of the Addis Ababa University effective today April 18.
In a statement it issued this evening, it said the decision was prompted by the need to control the actions of certain groups of students who are trying to use the majority of students in the country’s higher learning institutions for their own sinister political motives.
The Ministry said that the buildings housing the Ministry of Education, the Silassie Branch of the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia, Tourist Hotel and several other buildings in the Arat Kilo area were attacked by rioters yesterday.
Rioters have also burned down 10 vehicles belonging to the organization for National Examination the same day, it said.
It said there was no justification for such acts of vandalism and disruption of public peace and security, while proper solution was being sought to the demands posed by students of the Addis Ababa University.
The Ministry also warned students in other Universities and Colleges in the country to continue their studies in an orderly manner, and not to fall pray to political groups who are trying to use the situation to the benefit of their own political motives.
The Federal Police Crime Prevention Department meantime today strongly warned elements who may be engaged in activities aimed at damaging public and government property, have themselves to blame for measures that may be taken against them.
The Department, which said it has been instructed to take every measure deemed necessary against quarters bent on disturbing the peace and security of the people urged all citizens to cooperate in the effort to secure law and order.
It, is this connection advised parents to refrain from sending their children to school until the existing situation is normalized. It said, efforts will be made in the meantime to differentiate between students and the hooligans engaged in vandalising public and government property.
The Department called on the society to contribute its share in the fight against hooligans who are being driven by political organizations bent on making political gains at the expense of the students whose demands have duel been met.
The Department noted that students and hooligans have today been involved in a number of illegal activities resulting in the destruction of government, public and private property, necessitating stern measures on the part of the government.
It said in similar acts of vandalism yesterday students and vagabonds alike have stoned and destroyed windows and doors, burnt buildings and vehicles belonging to the Ministry of Education, the Social Security Commission the Sellassie Branch of the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia and the National Examinations Center, all located in Arat Kilo.
Meanwhile the Executive Committee of the Addis Ababa City Administration has ordered the temporary closure of primary and secondary schools in the city until April 22.
The decision follows a riot in Addis Ababa during which many shops were vandalized and public property damaged by what it called “Vagabonds” and students being used by other forces.”
In a statement it issued this evening, the Executive Committee Urged parents not to send their children to schools until next Monday, and watch out for persons who are trying to initiate their children into unacceptable behaviour.
It also urged the community in Addis Ababa to join hands with police and the Militia in securing peace and stability in the City.
In the statement, the Executive Committee regretted the vandalism that characterized today’s riots, during which public and private property was damaged, and looted.