Abiye Abebe

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Lij Abiye Abebe
Abiye Abebe.jpg
Spouse Princess Tsehai
Woizero Amarech Nasibu
Father Liqa Mequas Abebe Atnaf Seggad
Born 1918 [1]
Died 23 November 1974 (aged 55-56)
Addis Ababa
Religion Orthodox Christianity

Lieutenant-General Lij Abiye Abebe, KBE,[2] (1918 – 23 November 1974) was an Ethiopian politician and son-in-law of Emperor Haile Selassie.

Biography[edit]

Son of Liqa Mequas Abebe Atnaf Seggad, Abye was born 1918 in Addis Ababa as a Lij.[3] He attended the Holeta Military Academy.[4] In the 1940s and 1950s he was Minister of Defence, and later served as Minister of Justice and Minister of the Interior.[5] He chaired the High National Security Commission during the Ethiopian Revolution until his arrest by the Derg 16 July 1974.[6] Lt. General Abiye was serving as Chief of the General Staff when he was arrested.

According to John Spencer, when Prime Minister Aklilu Habte-Wold sought to resign his post in 1973, he suggested to the Emperor that he be replaced by General Abiye. Other sources indicate that Aklilu Habte-Wold's rival Prince Asrate Kassa was the person who put General Abiye forward as a fellow aristocrat. However Abiye consented to becoming Prime Minister only if his nomination, and those of his cabinet, were approved by the Ethiopian parliament, a condition Emperor Haile Selassie found unacceptable. As a result, Haile Selassie decided to appoint Endelkachew Makonnen Prime Minister instead.[7] Abiye was one of 60 former government officials executed the night of 22–23 November at Akaki Central Prison by the Derg.[8]

General Abiye was married three times. At Addis Ababa, on 26 April 1942, he married Princess Tsehai of Ethiopia who died in childbirth a year later. Subsequent to this marriage Lt. General Abiye Abebe wa accorded the dignities and protocol rank of the Emperor's son-in-law, even after he remarried. In 1946, married Woizero Amarech Nasibu, and then later to Woizero Tsige, his widow.

Career[edit]

  • Brigadier-General (26/04/1942).
  • Governor General of Wollega (1942-1943).
  • Minister for War 1949-1955 (Acting 1943-1947).
  • Minister of Justice (1958-1961).
  • Minister of Interior (1961-1974).
  • Ambassador to France (1955-1958).
  • Viceroy of Eritrea (1959-1961).
  • President of the Senate (1964-1974).
  • Minister for Defence and Chief of Staff (28/02/1974-22/07/1974).

Honours[edit]

National honours[edit]

  • Grand Cross of the Order of Menelik II.
  • St George Medal of War.
  • Haile Selassie Gold Medal 1st class.
  • Patriot Medal & three torches (1944).
  • Refugee Medal (1944).
  • Jubilee Medal (1955).
  • Jubilee Medal (1966).

Foreign honours[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^ Royal Ark
  2. ^ Royal Ark
  3. ^ Royal Ark
  4. ^ Shinn, David H. (2004). Historical Dictionary of Ethiopia (2 ed.). Scarecrow Press. pp. 3–. ISBN 9780810865662. 
  5. ^ Bahru Zewde, A History of Modern Ethiopia, second edition (London: James Currey, 2003), p. 205
  6. ^ Andargachew Tiruneh, The Ethiopian revolution, 1974-1987 (Cambridge: University Press, 1993), p. 68
  7. ^ Spencer, Ethiopia at Bay: A personal account of the Haile Selassie years (Algonac: Reference Publications, 1984), p. 337
  8. ^ Marina and David Ottaway, Ethiopia: Empire in Revolution (New York: Africana, 1978), p. 61