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At the Dejach Wube Compound in Arada Sub City members of 217 households say they will not leave despite being told by the Addis Ababa City Administration to make way for the new. These households they say that the condominium houses being offered by the city administration are too far away. Originally the houses were expected to be demolished to make way for the rail last month.
The Addis Ababa Housing Development & Administration Agency slated two bedroom apartments at the Gelan and Yeka Condominium sites for Dejach Wube dwellers affected by the railway project.
The condominiums are 73 sqm and cost 3,426 birr per square meter. Buyers must hand over a 20 percent down payment before they are allowed to enter.
The residents would prefer to live in Arat Kilo but those condos are targeted for the 40/60 projects.
Derje Meketa has been living in the neighborhood for over 20 years, he says the people around the area want Ethiopia to develop.
“We just want a place that is congruent with our social and economic bond as a community,” he told Capital. On September 21,2013 Derje said there was a meeting at Hager Fiker Theater called by the city administration about the light railway project and the group agreed to leave but he claims they were promised access to the Arat Kilo condo houses.
A woman who is in her late seventies agreed saying ”We are a community who have a 70 year old ‘Idir’ (community association) and we expected the authorities to move us to Arat Kilo but instead they moved us 25Km away from the city which is hard for our children and ourselves.
Belete Kassa, Arada Sub -City housing transfer officer countered by saying that there was no document that promises the Dejach Wube residents the right to transfer to Arat Kilo. “Thousands of people have moved to Jemmo, Gelan and Yeka sites from Merkato and Arat Killo for the railway project and other infrastructure projects because they know that the development of the city is very important for the country.”
”We treat all people equally and we construct the houses where we are able to construct them,” he added.
“Forcing them to move out is not an option” he added saying that the city officials are trying to convince these people to move in to Yeka and Gelan sites and 21 households have agreed to do so, at this time.