The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission (EHRC) is pleased that its Chief Commissioner Dr. Daniel Bekele was honoured with the 2021 German Africa Award. The German Africa Foundation (DAS) has announced today that the jury unanimously voted to award Dr. Daniel Bekele this highest award of its kind in Germany in recognition for “his lifelong advocacy for human rights in Ethiopia”. The Foundation’s statement also recognized the key role Daniel Bekele played “in significantly transforming the Ethiopian Human Rights Commission and successfully advocating for the greater independence and expansion of its powers”. The Foundation further stated that the prize will be presented in a formal ceremony in November 2021.
The award, given annually for over 25 years, celebrates Africans who are leaders in their domain and made invaluable contributions to advancement and progress. Previous recipients include Former Malian President Alpha Oumar Konaré, Ghanian lawyer and diplomat Mohammed Ibn Chambas and Kenyan anti-corruption activist John Githongo. Daniel Bekele will be the first Ethiopian to receive this award.
Awardees are selected by an independent jury of experts and officials from the Germany’s Federal Foreign Office, Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development and various cross-party representatives from political organisations and personalities from the country. The jury selects from a list of nominees and proposals submitted by German embassies, foreign offices of public and private organisations with operations in Africa.
The Ethiopian Human Rights Commission’s staff warmly congratulate Daniel Bekele and join the German Africa Foundation in honouring his leadership and devotion to the cause of human rights. “We at EHRC all readily testify that Daniel is a living example that change happens by being the change you want to see” said on the occasion Rakeb Messele Aberra, Deputy Chief Commissioner; “His door has never been shut to anyone who needs him, he works twice as hard as his staff and he has an unmatched capacity for bringing out the best in people. We are indeed proud to add our voice to this recognition of our Chief Commissioner.”
Link to German Africa Prize announcement: https://www.deutsche-afrika-stiftung.de/en/deutscher-afrika-preis/daniel-bekele-aethiopien/