The Coalition of Ethiopian Civil Society Organizations for Elections (CECOE) hosted a National Dialogue Agenda Collection Forum on September 5, 2023, at the Magnolia Hotel in Addis Ababa. The forum was attended by leaders and representatives from over 65 civil society organizations (CSOs) that operate in all regions and city administrations.  

The forum was opened by Abera Hailemariam, the Executive Director of CECOE. He welcomed the participants and thanked them for their commitment. He also highlighted the importance of CSOs’ involvement in the identification of the agenda to be submitted to the National Dialogue Commission. 

An opening remark was made by Dr. Moges Demisse, a representative from the Ethiopian Civil Society Organizations Council (ECSOC). Dr. Moges called on CSO representatives to actively set their agenda in the dialogue process. He said that “Ethiopian civil society organizations should move from receiving to setting agenda”.

participants were broken into seven groups to identify the root causes of the difference in fundamental national issues and the topics for the national dialogue as well as current issues stemming from the past that can be solved in a sustainable manner and ensure lasting peace. Having identified what it thinks are fundamental national issues, each group presented its list of agenda to the plenary session.  Some of the issues identified include.

  1. Constitutional issues
  2. Issues related to history and nation-building
  3. Issues of self-administration, identity, and governance
  4. Good governance problems
  5. Problems related to the implementation of the provisions of the constitution
  6. Current Conditions
  7. Various issues

Upon the mandate given by the participants, the CECOE Secretariate organized issues forwarded by the groups into one document and submitted it to the ECSOC.