September 7, 2019
According to a previous announcement by the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE) to hold various discussions with different parties regarding the implementation of the Sidama Zone referendum, the Board meets with representatives of the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples' Council, members of the regional leadership and zonal representatives on September 5, 2020. Speaker of the Southern Nations, Nationalities and Peoples' region Helen Debebe, Deputy Speaker Mengistu Shanka, Chief Adviser to the State government Anisa Melko, Sidama Zone Administrator Desta Ledamo, Hawassa City Administration Mayor Tiratu Beyene and other senior leaders of the region had constructive discussions with the Board members. Main points agreed upon at the discussion are:
- There will be no problems with the requested budget,
- all residents of the zone who are of age to participate in the vote shall participate in the referendum,
- although it will take time to develop legal and administrative frameworks, the region will have to carry over some of the days assigned to program for the preparation of these documents and make them ready for the September 30, 2012 meeting.
Finally, the Board notified participants it will hold similar discussions with stakeholders in accordance with the program and will put out public notice from time to time.