ESFNA’S Decision on Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s Request to Address Ethiopians during Dallas Tournament

Prime Minsiter Abiy Ahmed

The Ethiopian Sports Federation in North America (ESFNA) has voted not to accept Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s desire to address Ethiopians in North America during the Dallas tournament in July, but request it to be at a future tournament. 

ESFNA’s official statement:

Dear Fellow Ethiopians,

After days of deliberations regarding the request from H.E. Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed delivered by the Embassy of Ethiopia in Washington, D.C., the ESFNA Board of Directors have voted not to accept the Prime Minister’s desire to address Ethiopians in North America during the Dallas tournament in July, but request it to be at a future tournament. There were multiple pressing factors that led the Board to postpone the invitation, most importantly:

  1. The request was received too close to the tournament and there were too many variables introduced by the prospect of the Prime Minister’s attendance—specifically to ensure the safety of all guests and attendees;
  2. The size of the venue is not large enough to accommodate the potential audience the Prime Minister’s presence would create (an unscientific poll posted on ESFNA’s Facebook page reached over 140,000 people organically);
  3. Most of the tournament-related particulars—including liability insurance—have already been in place, and the time constraint to rework those particulars will make it improbable if not impossible to guarantee the necessary changes would be accomplished in time.

However, the majority of Board Members were honored by the request. This is the first time an Ethiopian head of state has ever requested to attend any ESFNA’s annual tournament. It is a testament to ESFNA’s contribution to the North American Ethiopian community, and the North American community at large.

ESFNA is cognizant of the wave of change occurring in Ethiopia. Our hope is these reforms continue and become more participatory of every stakeholder of the nation. ESFNA is acutely aware of the energy and vigor with which the Prime Minister is harvesting from the Ethiopian people. We encourage everyone, including Prime Minister Abiy, to continue to engage with the Ethiopian community through peaceful dialogue so that current and future generations of Ethiopians will continue to come together.

It is our hope that the office of the Prime Minister and ESFNA will have an opportunity to revisit this outstanding invitation at a later time.

In conclusion, we would like to thank our fellow Ethiopians from across the world who e-mailed, called and used every form of media and social networks to voice their opinions on the letter of request.

We hope to see you in Dallas this summer.

ESFNA

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9 thoughts on “ESFNA’S Decision on Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed’s Request to Address Ethiopians during Dallas Tournament

  1. Thank you for the official statement. ESFNA could have a positive contribution towards the hope and progress here. Your statement needs more to convince that the issue was logistics. Thanks again.

  2. Thanks for the statement. It appears that ESFNA lost this opportunity , which could have a contribution towards the positive progress. ESFNA’s official statement needs more to convince that the issue was logistics. Thanks again.

  3. It’s a pity that they disgracefully regected a PM’s request It’s also a disrespect to the Ethiopian as he is our leader. This apparently shows that some members of the committee are standing against the wish and hope of the Ethiopian people. Irrespective of their decision we will stand beside our PM and help him to fulfill his wish.

    Let God help Ethiopia and it’s people.

  4. ESFNA made me ashamed as an Ethiopian-American.

    #boycutt ESFNA

    It does not deserve your respect and presence.

  5. What a pity! Where are the the PM’s diplomatic protocols? Head of State of a great nation – Ethiopia – begging for a space in a tiny event that did not deserve such a publicity!
    I think the PM and his team should respect themselves and respect the country and the nation in their engagement. There are established norms and practices when it comes to diplomatic engagements – very sensitive matter than many of us could perceive or understand in the diplomatic protocols field.

  6. Why in the first place our PM chooses this venue instead of preparing his own venue and calls all the Diaspora for discussion. It is an open secret that this venue is controlled by few individuals and some of their ignorant followers. It is very shameful. It will be the first lesson to our PM to know who is who. I hope such silly mistakes will not be repeated in the future. Any way I appreciate our new and young PM for the initiation he took.

  7. He is our(PM) not ur’s. His respect is ours as is his disrespect. Who cares about ur trivial politics? Sleep in peace 4good if u want to stand against the fates of ur more than 100 million sisters and brothers.

  8. I don’t know why PM choose these groups. It is a long time Oromos, Hararis, Tigrawes have their own tournament. They cannot handle the crowd and don’t have insurance to cover PM speech. PM give them unnecessary publicity. They owe city of Atlanta several thousand dollars from previous event. These groups have most backward and chuvinist people.

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