“When we opened the abattoir, nobody told us not to do it”
BY DAWIT ENDESHAW | THE REPORTER
The controversial Shandong Dong Group, a Chinese donkey abattoir, based in Bishoftu (DebreZeit) of Oromia Regional State, is awaiting a response to the compliant it lodged with the Office of the Prime Minister a couple of months ago with regard to what they claimed to be unfair closure of their donkey slaughterhouse.
It has been five months since the company stopped slaughtering donkeys following an order of business termination from the then mayor of the town, Dadi Wodajo.
After the closure of its slaughterhouse, however, the company has managed to export 75 tons of donkey meat to China. The export was of meat that had been slaughtered prior to the ban, which came on the heels of a social media campaign against the abattoir and its operations.
In a letter to the PM Office, the investors pleaded for re-opening of the slaughterhouse.
“When we opened the abattoir, nobody told us not to do it,” according to the letter.
“I hope you could help us re-open our donkey abattoir, and make for a good investment environment,” adds the letter.
This slaughterhouse by Chinese investors was said to be offensive to the sensibilities of people who live near the facility, eventually leading to its closure.
The company is said to have invested close to USD eight million in three years.
Shandong obtained its investment license in 2014 from the then Ethiopian Investment Agency with a registered capital of 62.6 million birr.
The slaughterhouse rested on a 15, 000 sq.m. of land. It had a capacity to slaughter 200 donkeys per day. It has also created job opportunities for 100 local villagers.
The company used to source inputs from Adama, Modjo, Meqi, Dukem, Ziway as well as Addis Ababa.
Mesfin Temesgen and his friends are one of the suppliers of the company.
“We have now around 100 donkeys waiting to be supplied to the company,” he said. However, because of the ban, we could not sell them, he added.