GERD unravels Nile legend, opens door to cooperation

ADDIS ABABA-The Ethiopian Grand Renaissance Dam (GERD) has a capacity to transform the legend of the Nile River, which has been dominated by Sudan and Egypt’s unjustified possessiveness of the water into cooperation for mutual development, an expert in the issue said.

Speaking to the TRT World, Constitution Building and Governance Advisor at the International Institute for Democracy Adem Kessie stated that sometimes Sudan and Egypt have raised genuine concerns even though they are mostly struggling to maintain the status quo.

 “It’s important that the African Union-led talks could lead the negotiation countries to a modality for genuine cooperation.  I think the GERD not only transformed the age-long and legend-based relations in the River Nile, but also brought a new dynamism of economic partnerships among the three countries.” The expert further highlighted that the successive Ethiopian governments have unwavering commitment to utilize the River Nile for the benefit of their people.

The dam was first dreamed up by Emperor Haile Selassie I and that dream kept alive by Mengistu Hailemariam then translated into a reality by the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi. “Both Hailemariam Desalegn and Abiy Ahmed kept the dream, showcasing the GERD is a critical project, not just because of its economic potentials, but also being a source of national pride and self-reliance.

The Nile connected several countries as the amplitude cord because of geography, because of history and also because of spirituality and religion and it has been a source of mistrust and outright animosity.

As to him, the milestone in the building of the GERD can actually produce a harbinger of transformation of the past wrong relationship which is largely attributed to the legend that Egypt and partially Sudan rely on to claim the entire ownership of Nile waters.

The two downstream countries’ claim in the Nile waters is not only a verbal, but also unsustainable.” By the same token, Prime Minister Abiy (PhD) told the governments of Sudan and Egypt that the GERD is not threatening their water share during the mega dam’s first power generation ceremony last Sunday.

“The reality that should be recognized is that the water is flowing to Sudan and Egypt after generating power.

It is visible as you can see. We have been told that we will never be a threat to Sudanese and Egyptians.” The Premier also expressed Ethiopia’s desire to supply electricity not only to Sudan and Egypt, but also to connect with the grid system to Europe via Egypt.

 “Now, we are just supplying electric power to Sudan. In case, Egypt has a grid connected to Europe… So we can supply power to Europe through that path.

Because, connecting the Sudan-Egypt grid is very modest. Thus, we can reduce gas emission in Europe that is still being carried out to generate electricity.”


The   22 February  2022

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