The Federal Ethics and Anti Corruption Commission (FEACC) ordered the arrest of a person connected with 800 Kg of missing pork from the Addis Ababa Abattoirs Enterprise (AAAE).
The illegal pork cargo was spotted by a customs officer at a checkpoint on the Addis Ababa – Adama Expressway in July 2015. It was then handed over to AAAE to be confiscated and destroyed. The pork, with an estimated value of over 200,000 birr, went missing after being moved to AAAE’s premises on July 16, 2015.
Shortly after that, the FEACC began investigating the incident and the AAAE conducted their own internal investigation and responded by docking a lower level employee 10 days pay.
According to sources at the enterprise, the production supervisor, Alemayehu Gemechu, was arrested at work over a year since the incident, and taken into police custody on September 23 at 4:00pm.
The 35 year old suspect was brought to Lideta Federal High Court and was charged with reckless behavior. Meanwhile FEACC is conducting further investigations.
Every day the abattoir in Kera slaughters 10 to 15 pigs to supply pork to supermarkets and hotels. Even though most people in Ethiopia don’t eat pork, there are some small farmers in the business and some are illegally selling the product which has been a concern for the government. Expansion of hotels has led to more pork consumption in some areas of the country.
AAAE has been marred by corruption allegations and has recently hired a new managing director Nibret Beka, who replaced imprisoned ex-chief Efrem Desalegn.
Efrem and four former employees of the enterprise were imprisoned in November 2015 on charges of corruption. Their hearing is scheduled for this November.
One of the projects the new director is undertaking includes constructing a USD 100 million facility in Addis Ababa at an area known as Hanna Mariam. This will include a processing unit that will convert by-products into animal tallow, meat bone meal, glue and pure bone meal. The upgrading work will also produce biogas.