Ethiopian Waters Advisory Council

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Rev. Jesse L. Jackson, Sr. To Congress

NATIONAL HEADQUARTERS930 East 50th StreetChicago, Illinois 60615Phone: (773) 373-3366 * Fax: (773) 373-3571 May 19, 2020The Honorable Karen BassChair: US Congressional Black Caucus2059 Rayburn HOBWashington,

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  • Focus on the education and awareness of the Ethiopian public with regard to Abbay/the Blue Nile and other Ethiopian rivers
  • Design and recommend an integrated curriculum and a set of teaching materials on Abbay and other rivers for kindergarten and higher education that Ethiopian authorities will be encouraged to utilize deploying indigenous languages
  • Assemble, sort out, edit, consolidate and prepare the assortment of papers and commentaries on the GERD from the web and other sources in the form of brochures and other documents for use by Ethiopian academic institutions
  • Outline in the form of brochures historical events pertaining to the Nile
  • Uncover archeological artifacts pertaining to the Nile and other water basins
  • As part of the recommended curriculum, describe civilizations around the Nile starting from pre historic times
  • Depict and illustrate in the curriculum for children stories and legends outlined in the holy scriptures
  • Identify in the curriculum conflicts in which Ethiopia was involved to defend its rights on the Nile over the last several decades
  • Promote studies and works of art highlighting Ethiopia’s rights over its territorial waters
  • Utilize works of art as promoters of patriotism and national unity
  • Utilize works of art to educate Ethiopians and the world on existing international agreement, treaties, conventions and laws pertaining to cross border rivers in partnership with the National Sovereignty, Agreements and Treaties assessments thematic working groups
  • Discuss and document Ethiopia’s historical and legitimate claim, tax collection and other privileges that are acknowledged by third parties, for example, the Ottoman Empire
  •                                                                    Thematic Group Leads: Dr. Shimelis B. Gulema & Dr. Almaz Zewdie
  • Focus on analytical framework and policy papers concerning economic, social and financial benefits that accrue from investments in the GERD and in other dams within Ethiopia’s territorial boundaries
  • Recommend talking points for laypersons involved in defending and advocating
  • Outline and discuss the economic potentials of the Nile and its tributaries and project revenues when the river is utilized properly; and, if the GERD is postponed, analyze and present the potential and real costs of delaying the filling of the dam for Ethiopia
  • Estimate the costs and benefits or revenue stream from developing the Nile and its tributaries
  • Estimate the cost of completing the GERD and prepare and disclose projection to the Secretariat
  • Provide an overview and reasonable estimate of the socio-economic value of the Nile to downstream countries, comparing these benefits to upstream countries
  • Weigh in using analytical tools and arrive at a general picture and estimate economic and social benefits forgone or lost as a consequence of the incapacitation imposed by Egypt, the donor community and others on Ethiopia
  • Generate ideas, strategies and options on poverty alleviation and food security for Ethiopia
  •                                                    Thematic Group Leads: Dr. Berhanu Begashaw, Dr. Ayele Tadese
  • Provide technical analysis concerning the potential opportunities and hurdles Ethiopia faces in harnessing and utilizing Nile waters, the number of current and future dams for instance, that could be built based on previous studies
  • Conduct technical analysis and estimate the amount of hydro power that could be harnessed from the dams; and the foreign exchange earnings Ethiopia might receive
  • Conduct an assessment of the amount of land that could be irrigated by Abbay/ Nile waters
  • Analyze and make an estimate of the benefits that would accrue from dams, fisheries, flood protection, ground water, the environment and transport
  • Carryout and or conduct environmental assessments or impacts on of mega dams on indigenous people and on the environment
  • Analyze and offer policy options concerning optimal utilization of the Nile, water conservation and usage
  • Discuss in simple language the impacts of GERD and usage of the river Nile on the environment; and offer solutions
  • Identify mitigating technologies and propose solutions concerning drought, deforestation, soil erosion, desertification, changes in farming cultures and practices
  • Identify and propose water use and low-cost conservation technologies that advance sustainability for Ethiopia and other countries in the Horn of Africa
  • Analyze and propose solutions to mitigate global warming and the potential effects of large dams on the environment and society
  • Explore best practices across the globe concerning the value-added of moving from rain-fed agriculture to commercial, irrigated and intensive farming for Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa
  •                                             Thematic Group Leads: Dr. Eng, Semu A. Moges & Dr. Eng, Wossenu Abtew
  • Design and prepare a robust media and advocacy strategy utilizing all the evidence-based resources generated by Thematic Working Groups
  • Integrate fragmented efforts with regard to Ethiopia’s rights concerning the use of its water resources including Abbay/Nile
  • Focus on global awareness and education of critical communities across the globe, especially UN specialized agencies, major donors to Ethiopia, the European Union, the African Union, legislative bodies, foundations, multilateral donor institutions, Sub-Saharan academic institutions and the media
  • State clearly and succinctly using factual evidence and in writing that Ethiopia does not and will not allow a repeat of the 1929 and 1959 Agreements and colonial treaties on the Nile.
  • Underscore in writing that successive Ethiopian governments consider Nile Agreements and Treaties null and void. Ethiopia has rejected them as unjust, unfair and inconsistent with international norms and Agreements that govern transboundary waterways. Instead of asserting clonally imposed and dictated Agreements and Treaties on the Nile, Egypt must be compelled to join all riparian countries within the spirit of the Nile Basin Initiative (NBI).
  • Be bold enough and change the narrative on the Nile dismissing Egypt’s hegemonic colonial mental attitude; and, instead offering a forward looking and 21st century and Afro-centric alternative.
  •                                         Thematic Group Leads: Dr. Berhanu Taye and Prof. Achamyeleh Debella
  • Provide a well-researched and reasoned set of arguments showing the linkages between Ethiopia’s legitimate rights to harness its water resources for the benefit of its growing population, its national security and sovereignty
  • Analyze military capabilities of the Horn, North Africa and the rest; and identify Ethiopia’s capabilities to defend itself
  • Identify the core and systemic origins of proxy wars against Ethiopia and propose optimal solutions; and link options to global threats including the fight against terrorism
  • Diagnose rivalries to dominate the Red Sea and the coordinated push to establish beach heads in the Horn and Ethiopia’s lack of access to its traditional sea ports; and propose a menu of solutions to redress this huge and intractable problem
  • Discuss and identify gaps in Ethiopia’s intelligence networks in the region with a view of enhancing its capabilities
  • Analyze Ethiopia’s historical and strategic relations with the USA, Israel, Russia and others and identify future scenarios with a view of positioning Ethiopia’s place
  • Define and propose national defense, security and intelligence capabilities and strategies, including Artificial Intelligence (AI) and cyber defense mechanisms that will ensure Ethiopia’s sovereignty, territorial integrity and the defense of its infrastructure including the GERD
  • Provide overview concerning Agreements, Treaties and international laws that pertain to transboundary rivers
  • Identify specific Nile and other transboundary river treaties and agreements that Ethiopia has signed and to which it is committed
  • Pinpoint and summarize agreements and or statutes, including the Tripartite Declaration of Principles that Egypt claims are binding on Ethiopia; and use findings to present Ethiopia’s position to the global community
  • Review Nile Basin Initiative (NBI) documents and extract principles that benefit Ethiopia and other Black African riparian nations; and propose resurrection of this model for future negotiations
  • Provide substantive and substantial inputs to the Global Engagement thematic working groups on the roles of and relevance of IGAD, Black African riparian countries, the AU, the European Union, the G-7 countries, Russia, China, the Middle East, the Arab League, the Congress of the U.S.A., the U.S. Departments of the Treasury and State
  • Assess and provide guide on the bridging roles of the U.N. system and multilateral organizations including the World Bank; and the funding and investment potentials of foundations and philanthropic organizations can play
  • Design and recommend to the Secretariat and to the Global Engagement thematic working group how best Ethiopia’s diplomats can and should present the country’s position in a strategic and smart manner
  • Design and recommend a menu of strategies, tactics and written proposals that Ethiopian negotiating teams can use
  • Identify best practices from other countries and present doable options for Ethiopia to negotiate tax payments by Nile waters beneficiary countries, Egypt and Sudan that utilize Ethiopia’s waters freely
  •                                          Thematic Group Leads: Dr. Semahegn Gashu , Dr. Mismaku Asrat