ADDIS ABEBA – Ambassador Michael Raynor has extended Ethiopian New Year’s Message as follows:
At the start of a new year, people throughout the world typically do the same things: we reflect on the past year, we take stock of our current circumstances, and we wonder: What will the new year bring?
And we also spend some time thinking about what we can do to make the coming year, and the years to follow, into the future we want for ourselves and our families.
While this process of reflection and anticipation is very personal to each of us, I hope Ethiopians throughout the country, and the diaspora, will take a moment to recognize what momentous times these are for Ethiopia and her people.
When I reflect on the past year, I’m inspired by the achievements and ongoing progress in implementing Ethiopia’s ambitious reform agenda.
And I’m heartened by the commitments that so many individual Ethiopians have made to supporting their country’s reforms and building their country’s bright future.
That’s not to say that everything has been easy, or will be easy in the days ahead.
Change – even the positive change currently underway in Ethiopia – can be confusing, challenging, and even disruptive.
And implementing a reform agenda of such breadth and ambition remains a monumental task.
But I’m more convinced than ever that Ethiopia’s historic reform effort holds the key for all Ethiopians – regardless of their region, ethnicity, or religion – to build the future that so many of you tell me you want for yourselves, your communities, and your country: a future of economic opportunity, political inclusiveness, and stability.
And a future in which all Ethiopians fully commit to upholding their country’s extraordinary heritage of peaceful co-existence, tolerance, and goodwill.
As we go into this new year, I hope each and every Ethiopian feels invested in making the most of their country’s unprecedented moment of opportunity.
I hope each of you takes full ownership of this moment, and asserts your personal claim to Ethiopia’s bright future.
But at the same time, I hope you make sure that the future you build together is the best future for all Ethiopians.
That’s the spirit that my embassy team and I are bringing to supporting Ethiopia’s reforms, and Ethiopia’s people.
And it’s why so many of our programs are focused on investing in Ethiopians as people – in their health, their education, their ability to participate fully in Ethiopia’s new democratic space, and their capacity to build prosperous lives for themselves and their families.
When I look forward to the New Year, I’m full of hope and excitement. I hope you are too.
There are challenges yet to overcome, and there’s much left to be accomplished, but the opportunities before you and your great country are limitless, and I know that you and your fellow Ethiopians are up to the task.
I also know that you’ll have me, my embassy colleagues, and the government and people of the United States, by your side every step of the way, as you build the wonderful future that you and all Ethiopians want to see.
Thank you for letting me share my thoughts with you. From all of us at the United States Embassy in Ethiopia, Melkam Addis Amet!