Coronavirus: Ethiopia restores internet access to western Oromia

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Phone services were also disconnected in some areas

Internet connectivity has been restored to Ethiopia’s Oromia region which has been without connection for about three months.

This development is to control the spread of coronavirus.

In January this year, a partial internet cut was imposed across several towns in western Ethiopia, following an outbreak of violence in Oromia.

In some areas, phone services were also disconnected.

The President confirmed early on Tuesday, that “due to improvement in the security situation in the region, connection was to be restored.”

Activists, press and human rights groups had actively campaigned for government to restore internet access in the affected areas.

The campaign got a fresh stimulus with the coronavirus pandemic as campaigners insisted that people in the region risked not getting enough information about the public health crisis.

There have been 23 confirmed Covid-19 cases in Ethiopia with no known deaths.

At the time of the blackout, government defended the move as necessary to curb rising insecurity in the area where the army was engaged in exchanges with a former rebel group.

Over a dozen officials of the region have been killed in the last few months by suspected rebels in the area.

State-run FBC on twitter, confirmed the return of connectivity to the region:

 

Olajumoke Adeleke