Africa’s boldest experiment in development is in mortal danger. After holding it together for 27 years, the Tigrayan-led clique that has ruled Ethiopia with some success and much repression since 1991 is at risk of implosion. The small group of people who have run Ethiopia’s "development state" have led an all-out effort to bring a country that was once a byword for poverty and starvation towards middle-income status. If South Korea had a miracle on the Han River, the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front, which controls every seat in parliament, has been aiming for a "miracle on the Nile". Though the government’s detractors question the official statistics, the leaders of Africa’s second-most populous country have had much success. The UN Development Programme has called Ethiopia "without question one of Africa’s high achievers, with a rapidly growing economy and falling poverty rates". The World Bank estimates that, albeit from an incredibly low base, the economy grew ...

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