20 May Congressman advocates for Ethiopia’s exclusion from AGOA, international lending
Member of the U.S. Congress wants Ethiopia to remain excluded from the African Growth and Opportunity Act (AGOA) trade preferences until the Ethiopian government investigates alleged diversions of humanitarian aid in Tigray Regional State.
Congressman Brad Sherman urged USAID and the Biden administration “not to reinstate the African Growth Opportunity Act (AGOA) and not to back international lending for Ethiopia until US humanitarian monitors are on the ground.”
Sherman claims that Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed (Ph.D.) is actively seeking AGOA and international lending. The Congressman and Administrator of USAID argued in regards to the situation in Tigray.
Since two weeks ago, USAID has suspended the delivery of humanitarian aid to Tigray due to aid diversion.
“USAID uncovered that food aid, intended for the people of Tigray suffering under famine-like conditions, was being diverted and sold on the local market. Immediately after this discovery, USAID referred the matter to USAID’s Office of the Inspector General, which began an investigation,” reads a statement issued by USAID on May 3, 2023.
It states that a comprehensive review of the programs has been initiated and that senior leadership from the Bureau of Humanitarian Assistance has been deployed to Ethiopia to conduct additional assessments as part of the investigation. In coordination with the US Embassy in Addis Ababa and implementing partners, USAID determined that a temporary pause in food aid was the best course of action following the review.
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