Moderator Tim Sebastian an award-winning journalist with former dictator Hailemariam Desalegn

Having resigned after several years of unrest in Ethiopia in which hundreds of protesters were killed, Hailemariam Desalegn left behind a questionable human rights record.

He tells Conflict Zone’s Tim Sebastian that he began reforms now being taken up by his successor and wasn’t aware of alleged abuse in secret prisons.

“If I knew those things I would have corrected them,” said Hailemariam.

Watch the full show here and let us know what you think below.


  1. Ato Hailemariam was a simple puppet of the TPLF and may not have known what the TPLF leaders had done in their secret world. When the TPLF faced stiff resistance and prepared for their flight to their last remaing bastion (makelle),they apparently decided to replace ato Hailemariam with another puppet from the south. The apparent candidate was ato Shiferaw Shigute but the Oromo led internal power struggle foiled the TPLF plan and Abiy Ahmed emerged as a strong man. As is known among the Tigray TPLF elites, they have contempt for the Oromos and had underestimated the Oromo group in their EPRDF.


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