On Jan 11, 2023, a Facebook post emerged sharing the picture of Ambassador Mesganu Arega with a claim that he was appointed as Ethiopian Foreign Minister by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed.
The post also stated that the new minister replaced the incumbent foreign minister Demeke Mokkonen.
The Facebook page has over thirteen thousand followers and the post is highly likely to reach a wider audience.
HaqCheck however confirmed that Ambassador Mesganu Arega was not appointed a foreign minister. Prime Minister Abiy appointed the former ambassador as a state minister of the Ethiopian Foreign Ministry.
Ministerial reshuffling has been recurrent since Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed came to power.
When Abiy came in 2018, Workneh Gebeyehu, the current Executive Secretary of the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD) was Ethiopia’s Foreign Minister.
The former Amhara regional president, Gedu Andargachew replaced Workneh Gebeyehu as Foreign Minister in 2019.
As the war between the Ethiopian government and Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) broke out in November 2020, Prime Minister Abiy appointed Demeke Mekonnen as the Minister of Foreign Affairs. Demeke has since been the Deputy Prime Minister and Foreign Minister.
On Jan 11, 2023, the Ethiopian Ministry of Foreign Affairs published a short news statement on its Facebook page that Prime Minister Abiy named former ambassador Mesganu Arega as Foreign State Minister, effective January 10.
The claim that PM Abiy picked Mesganu Arega as Ethiopian Foreign Minister replacing Demeke Mokonnen immediately emerged on Facebook.
The post was later edited and stated that the former ambassador was appointed as Ethiopia’s Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs.
However, HaqCheck cross-checked the information and confirmed that Ambassador Mesganu Arega was not appointed as a new Foreign Minister.
Additionally, he was not named as Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs.
The statement from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Ethiopia asserts that the former CEO of the Ethio-Engineering Group and former ambassador to Qatar and UAE was appointed as a State Minister of Foreign Affairs.
Thus, HaqCheck rendered the post False.