Ethiopia was elected (on June 02) to a three-year term (2014-2017) as Deputy Member of the Governing Body of the International Labour Organization (ILO), during the 103rd International Labour Conference. In addition to Ethiopia, Sudan, Kenya, Angola, Tanzania, Zimbabwe, Algeria, Burkina Faso, and Niger were elected from the African continent.
Ethiopia is expected to dedicate its time to coordinate and collaborate its efforts with elected countries of Africa to jointly promote Africa’s position for the term of 2014-2017 on various issues including migration, employment, and human trafficking. It is tasked to oversee member countries’ measures to create favorable working climate to their workers.
Abdulfetah Hassan, Ethiopia’s Minister of Labour and Social Affairs, headed the Ethiopian delegation to the Conference, and lauded the commendable contributions made by ILO for its sustained support to the protection of the rights of Ethiopian nationals abroad.
He also called on ILO to continue its. He further noted that the Government of Ethiopia had made ceaseless progress in the areas of economic, social, and political development with the view to tackle human trafficking as well as protect the rights of Ethiopian nationals abroad. He added that Ethiopia had become a force for peace in the Horn of Africa and beyond.
The Ethiopian delegation explained that Ethiopia had strived for the enhancement of its cooperative partnership with ILO in the areas of technical assistance and capacity building. It also indicated that the Government of Ethiopia established the National Task Force led by Deputy Prime Minister, Demeke Mekonnen, focusing on the prevention of human trafficking.
It was detailed that Ethiopia was committed to sustain the inclusive economic development and dislodge the root causes of trafficking and smuggling of persons, including poverty, lack of education, unemployment and other problems. It was noted that Ethiopia had dedicated its efforts to further cement democracy, good governance and human rights.
Appreciating ILO’s activities in the fight against forced labour, the Ethiopian delegation urged to extend its commitment to “suppress forced labour by unanimous adoption of a strong instrument containing the core principles of prevention, compensation and access to justice as well as supplementary regulatory mechanisms.”