Parliament and Dominant Party System in Ethiopia
This chapter reviews the mode and manner of instituting the Ethiopian legislature under three successive regimes: Emperor Haileselassie, the Dergue (one-party dictatorship), and Ethiopia People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). It also attempts to identify similarities and differences in respect to the organization and mode of operation of the Ethiopian legislature, and the roles it played in undertaking oversight and control functions. I undertook this effort in order to explore whether democratic governance has even been the defining element of Ethiopian polity in the different political systems in question. To this end, the workings of the Ethiopian parliament will be examined in terms of its changing roles under autocracy (a no-party imperial rule), the Dergue, and EPRDF (a multiparty system characterized by an overwhelming dominance of a single party). It is, however, observed that in all historical periods the Ethiopian has operated under the shadow of a one- or dominant-party system neither of which is conducive to vibrant democratic governance legislative process and outcomes.
KeywordsState Council Electoral District Constitutional Reform Federal Constitution National Legislature
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