The veteran Tigrai Peoples’ Liberation Front (TPLF) fighter, Arkebe Ouqubai has been assigned as Board Chair of the Ethiopian Railway Corporation (ERC) replacing the mayor of the Addis Ababa City Administration Diriba Kuma.
Arkebe was assigned in a letter written by PM Hailemariam Desalegn as the board chairman of the railway corporation three weeks back.
Arkebe was working as an advisor of the Prime Minister with a ministerial portfolio on construction related issues.
Arkebe Ouqubai also got his PhD from the School of Oriental and African Studies in London. The former ERC board chairman, Diriba Kuma, mayor of the Addis Ababa City Administration, has led the corporation, which undertakes the multibillion dollar projects throughout the country for over one year.
The current PM Hailemariam had also led the corporation for many years.
Sources said that Arkebe is responsible for the corporation because there are a lot of decisions to make and it needs a lot of guidance right now and the mayor’s responsibilities at the city did not allow him to follow the corporation’s activities in a proper manner. “This is the main reason for the replacement,” a source who is close to the matter told Capital.
Before the 2005 election Arkebe led Addis Ababa and also served as State Minister of Urban Development. His achievement and leadership capacity in the Addis Ababa city Administration has made Arkebe popular in the country. His close friends describe Arekbe as a workaholic and are confident that he will make remarkable achievements in constructing the railway system that stretches all over the country.
Diriba is currently board chairman of the state monopoly ethio telecom.