Moyale border ERCA office under siege


A string of robberies continue to plague the Ethiopian Revenue and Customs Authority’s (ERCA) Moyale Branch.
For the past two weeks theft and property destruction have plagued the office, located on the border between Ethiopia and Kenya.
Chanyalew Haji, branch manager of the Authority says last week they attempted to come up with a solution to the problem.
He said that the incidents began when eight vehicles were burned and two severely damaged by people throwing rocks. Although the fire was later controlled by the National Defense Force and members of Federal Police, when security forces left larger groups came and looted the compound, stealing anything they could carry.
The building being used by ERCA also serves as a staff residence and a center for a new project called ‘One Stop Border’.
New infrastructure housing the One Stop Border project and equipment were taken away or damaged by the criminals, according to Chanyalew.
“We cannot evaluate the destruction as we now fear for our security if we go to the store area,” he told Capital.
“The situation now is not like what it was a year ago and it is beyond the capacity of the security forces in the area, we are worried about the safety of our staff.”
Destruction and violent activities are still occurring at the ERCA building and the Agency’s employees are being threatened.
“The branch office and the border are stable for now but no one is sure about what could possibly happen,” he added.
Capital attempted to reach Commissioner General Melaku Fenta of the Federal Police to comment on the issue but was unable to obtain a comment.