Thursday, January 2, 2014

Imprisoned Ethiopian Journalist Denied Medical Treatment

According to The Daily Journalist (an online news outlet), Ethiopian Journalist Woubshet Taye who is serving 14 years sentence in Kality Prison in Addis Ababa, is being denied a Medical Treatment. Taye is suffering from severe renal calculus (kidney stone).
imagesWoubshet Taye is among a number of journalists who have been prosecuted under the anti-terrorism law in Ethiopia. He was imprisoned, and convicted for his work as the deputy editor of the now-defunct weekly newspaper, Awramaba Times.
Taye told to journalists, who were visiting the prisoners of conscience in Kality a week ago, that although the doctors in the prison’s clinic told him that his case was severe, he has been given no medical treatment yet.
They told me that my case required urgent treatment in well equipped hospital, but I have not yet been transferred to such a hospital for unknown reason”, he explained. “They told me that there was nothing to do for me. They are even not voluntary to give me anti pain drugs.” he added.

 “I feels sever pain, mostly in the area between my ribs and hip”, Woubshet told to the journalists, adding “It has now begun to prevent me from sleeping.” According to Woubshet, since recent days he has even begun to see blood in his urine.
Sentenced to 14 years imprisonment, Taye was transferred to Zeway, a facility far from his wife, small kid and over eighty years old parents. He first began to feel the symptoms while he was there. He came back to Kality when his health condition got worsened.
Taye’s wife, Berhane Tesfaye, fears that her husband’s health condition may worsen and cause further deadly complications. “The international community should understand what is going on against him and exert pressure on the government to be responsible and allow him adequate medical treatment” she said.
Taye is a father of a son of 3 years old. According to reports, because of his jail, his family is suffering from serious economic problems. Taye is the recipient of this year's “CNN African Journalist of the Year” award.
Brutal Bribe Seekers
last week a letter written by Woubshet Taye was smuggled out of the prison and published on a local news paper, Ethio-Mhidar. In the letter, he reveals the presence of corruption in Kality Prison saying that sick prisoners are often asked bribe by the person’s officials to get permission to receive medical treatment out of the prison.
However, the journalist said nothing in the letter whether he is asked a bribe or not.
According to many, denial of providing necessary medical treatment is what the prison administration uses as retaliation against prisoners of conscience and political prisoners.

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