Ethiopia’s election: the stakes are high amid fear, mistrust and violence

If Abiy wins and takes the nation building route he would do well to listen more and lecture less. This listening and dialoguing process needs to start with his own constituency – Oromia – and to extend to war-torn Tigray. But he may in fact choose the authoritarian path. There will be no shortage of pretexts if this is deemed politically profitable. Abiy can project himself as the leader of law and order. There is already widespread lawlessness and the loss of a sense of security and safety among the masses. Ethiopia is at a stage where democracy can be seen as a luxury.