Addis Ababa — An Ethiopian diaspora from Atlanta, Georgia, is going to open a state of the art dialysis unit at Menelik II Referral Hospital.
It is to be recalled that Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed made a call to the Ethiopian diaspora to come home for the upcoming Ethiopian Christmas and Epiphany holidays.
Among the diaspora who responded to the call, Tigist Abebe, Chief Executive Officer and Founder of Yeabe Medical Center and Rehabilitation said she has been doing various activities to start dialysis service with an outlay of over 10 million birr in Ethiopia over the past four months.
In an exclusive interview with ENA, Tigist said some 30 machines have been delivered to the hospital and it is expected to start operation soon.
She added that the coming of the diaspora has many advantages, noting that even before the premier’s call for homecoming, “some of us were exchanging ideas to come and do something to our country.”
Following the call, the motivation of the diaspora has grown greatly and they need to contribute to their motherland, following our footstep, the CEO stated.
There may be challenges like in any less developed countries, Tigist noted, adding that many things are being done by the government and a lot of things are being facilitated now.
From my own experience, a lot has changed. As a member of the diaspora, we do not have to take advantage of it and we have to be treated like any other fellow Ethiopian.
“I am very excited about this diaspora home coming and their response. But for those diaspora who come and request what to do, there are many things that they can see. What we need to do is take responsibility, contribute their share to schools, hospitals and support family to achieve something in a year,” she elaborated.
According to her, the diaspora need to leave their legacy in their country.
Menelik II Referral Hospital CEO, Dr. Tadesse Habte-yohannes said on his part the number of users of dialysis service in Ethiopia is high.
Therefore, this dialysis unit is very important as the facility will give services for 200-240 persons in a week upon completion. That is over tenfold increase from the present 24.
“When this dialysis unit becomes operational, we think that it will double the service. Related to this is ophthalmology, which is rare in Ethiopia and is known as Menelik Hospital’s specialty. The construction of a building with 2 basement and 4 floors will be completed this week to open a standard ophthalmology (eye) center where people can avoid going out of the country for the treatment. I think the country needs a lot of help in this regard. I would like to take this opportunity to call on the Ethiopian diaspora who have the capacity to extend help,” he said.
The other diaspora from Washington DC who works as media professional, Lidet Muleta related that the Ethiopian diaspora coming in mass to their country for the holiday season create influx of financial economic activities that Ethiopia obviously needs at this time.
“I think the diaspora play key role in other countries like Philippines, Nigeria, India and Bangladesh, that have really benefited a lot. These are the countries that have highly depended on their diasporas.”
Lidet added that “Ethiopia has also a significant number of diasporas in the world; but our contribution is not there yet. Ethiopia can do a lot both from the Ethiopian government side as well as from the diaspora side to increase the contribution, whether it’s economic, labor, education, technology, information sharing and so forth. There is a lot we can do.”
She further emphasized the need for enhancing contribution of the diaspora, exploiting their different backgrounds and different professions.
So, the government can continue to facilitate transactions to make them smooth, easier, transparent; and have good administrators so that the diaspora can feel comfortable and have the confidence to invest in his/her country, to share information, work, move to Ethiopia and create small businesses.