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Teddy Afro released

The Ethiopian Television has just announced that popular singer Teddy Afro has been released from Kaliti jail at 6 PM today after serving 16 months of a two-year sentence.
“I would like to express my respect and gratitude to all the people of our country,” Teddy told ETV after his release.
“I was able to meet many good people in prison, from the lowest-ranking policemen to the highest administrator. I had a nice time. My relations with other prisoners were also good,” he said.
His mother Tilaye Aragie was relieved and excited at his release.
“Teddy is at home. It is good news today,” she told reporters.
It was revealed that Teddy headed to his mother’s house found in St. Gabriel Church in Haya Hulet area right after his release.
After his arrival, the house was filled to capacity with fans, friends and members of his family celebrating his release.Renowned athlete Haile Gebreselassie whom Teddy eulogized in one of his song was one of the first people to show up at the house.
Singer Kuku Sebsebie, a long-time friend and admirer of Teddy, was also there.
The singer was first sentenced a six-year on December 5, 2008 but the term was later cut to two years.
Teddy has pleaded not guilty to causing the death of a young man in hit and run accident, a charge many of his fans believe was politically motivated.
As news of his release spread, Teddy Afro’s songs are being heard in many parts of Addis.

Categories: City Journal
  1. Sekokaw Beza
    August 13, 2009 at 6:00 pm


  2. kettle
    August 13, 2009 at 6:46 pm

    what is all this all for one azmarie!

    • August 19, 2009 at 8:33 am

      you ahve wrong attitude for teddy ok.

    • August 19, 2009 at 8:43 am

      AZMARINET is not a crime. Kemaireba Mehur tiru azmari Yemeretal.

      you see teddy is not only azmari he is lovely, honest, and PATRIOT AZMARI for Ethiopian people. ok

      he is a human being if he made a mistake he will be punished like others .

      Yes there is one saying EWNET ATMOTEM GOD save him from everythin g

      GIZE LEKULU!!!!


      please Kettle change your bad thinking about Teddy oK? he is a Patriot.

  3. kettle
    August 13, 2009 at 6:50 pm

    He is one of the most admired in Eth. but he is not like a patriot. He is a simple but gifted one. Don’t exaggeration things you little fans. Think big things. Time is up!–Any ways, His release is good.

  4. Baheilu
    August 13, 2009 at 6:50 pm

    We LOVE YOU TEDDY !!!!!
    DEATH to tplf !!!!

  5. August 13, 2009 at 8:00 pm

    watch the interview with ETV @ http://tinyurl.com/teddyisfree

    You can watch the short Interview with VOA

  6. Kawru
    August 14, 2009 at 5:03 am

    Ye mata ye mata Iwnat tashanifalech.

    Teddy leghiziew Minim bichegher, niTSuh mehonu na beghif mataserun bemefetatu aregagheTe.

    Lezihm mella ye’itopian hizb ameseghene.

    Teddy be’isr bEtim Tiru serateGNoch menorachewn tenaghere.

    QimeGNa alemehonun aregagheTe.

    Teddy lezelalem yinur!

    Birtukan tereGNAwa, ‘iwnatin absariwa, ghelaCCiwa! tifata!

  7. ETENU
    August 14, 2009 at 7:03 am

    Teddy is not just Azmari, he is an activist and human rights advocate and has indicated that through his songs. He had sang for Muslims, Christians and all ethnic groups of Ethiopia to be united. His message through his songs is a united strong Ethiopia. Who the hell are you Kettle to call him Azmari, go to Buna bet to find Azmarit. Teddy is not and will not be Azmari.




  8. Doi Feyissa
    August 14, 2009 at 7:55 am

    We are happy for your release & say “CONGRATULATIONS!!!”

  9. Doi Feyissa
    August 14, 2009 at 7:58 am

    we are happy for your release & say “CONGRATULATIONS!!”

  10. Befikadu
    August 14, 2009 at 9:14 am


  11. ankami
    August 14, 2009 at 9:46 am

    Felicidades!!! from Spain

  12. Ayele Bekerie
    August 14, 2009 at 10:49 am

    Let me add to Etenu’s point. Azmarinet is an honorable and, if managed properly, an income generating industry. A case in point is the king of pop, Michael Jackson. Michael continues to generate millions of dollars even after his death.

    One of our failures, as a people, is seran manquashesh! It is by acknowledging and respecting all occupations, including azmarinet, shekla serinet, biret ketkachenet, tela temakinet and negadenet that we will be in a position to create and sustain real development.

  13. Selamawit
    August 14, 2009 at 9:27 pm

    Etenu said “Teddy is not just Azmari, he is an activist and human rights advocate…..”

    Please!!!! He is a popular Azmari and very talented, but human right advocate ???? what has he done to be called that? I say none.
    I have not heard any honarable thing he has done like help the poor,
    give some money to the needy, open a school etc.
    Sometimes we forget who are the real heros among us.
    I am glad and happy he is out, indeed he is talented but let’s give credit were credit is due.
    I can’t help but think about somewhere in Addis a life was lost ……

  14. ETENU
    August 14, 2009 at 11:44 pm

    OH Selamawit, you are so right he may not have a charity organization set and funded by him or opened a school. His songs has inspired many to work towards peace, unity and fraternity. He has addressed ethnicity and its impact in every household, and Orommo falling in love with Amhara or an Eriterian falling in love with you name it, issues of Muslims and Christians. So many activists didn’t open school or give money but they send strong message that touches many and make them realize hate is wrong. In that sense Teddy’s songs has impacted many. I hope you got my point, I am too fatigue to write. I will explore many things he has done, I just don’t want him to be compared to the regular Azmari who sings to get his Tej or Tella, or YELETE Erat.

  15. ETENU
    August 14, 2009 at 11:52 pm

    Ayele, thank you so much. I aggree with you and I do respect all proffessions or skills of humans, it takes a talent or good voice to be Azmari. Singers and song writters are well respected individuals. The word Azmare among some Ethiopians represents people who sing and get drunk entertaining others and making a living out of it. I wish we could address them as Dimsawiyan, Tewaniyan etc. or you find a good word for it. Let us address Teddy as singer and song writer Teddy Afro. (Teddy Kasshun Germame or something like that is his fathers name.

  16. August 15, 2009 at 3:26 pm

    It sure is a happy day in Addis. Thank you Arefe. So good to have Addis Journal to come to for something new and exciting from home.

  17. Rose
    August 17, 2009 at 8:38 am

    I am a visitor to Addis. Forgive me for bringing a completely different issue.
    But I am a little confused.Everywhere I go, I see people staring at me.
    Is it because I am foreigner? Do Ethiopians stare at each other?

  18. ETENU
    August 19, 2009 at 12:51 am

    OH my dear it is not because Ethiopians stare, you are probably one of those foreigners or Ethiopians born overseas and travel to impress Ethiopians by appearing unique, in the way you dress or do your hair. You might have underestimated Ethiopians. They know fashion, style and class long before any country, without any western or colonial influence. You sound like you are also one of those who think you have gone to see barbarians and found out sophisticated people and thought their staring is related to their barbarian culture. Ethiopians don’t stare at each other more than what other people stare. My dear, next time don’t go to visit, if their staring is bothering you or shut up and complain. ETHIOPIA LOVE IT OR LEAVE IT.

  19. Rahwa
    August 20, 2009 at 4:49 pm

    Please read this article from the Economist.


    IT WAS a euphoric week for younger Ethiopians. The country’s great long-distance runner, Kenenisa Bekele, ran down an Eritrean rival to win gold in the world athletics championships. Even better, the country’s most popular singer, Teddy Afro, was released from prison.

    Ethiopia’s prime minister, Meles Zenawi, says there are no political prisoners in his country. Human-rights activists and diplomats say there are thousands—and a lot of Ethiopians believe Mr Afro was one of them.

    Mr Afro was jailed for a hit-and-run incident in 2006, despite always insisting that he was not in the car which the prosecution said knocked down and killed a homeless man in Addis Ababa. He served 16 months of a two-year sentence, which had already been reduced on appeal from six years on grounds of shaky evidence. His supporters, though, allege that his jailing had more to do with his third album, “Yasteseryal”, released just before the country’s last election in 2005. A lusty patriot who often sings, with funk and reggae influences, in praise of Ethiopia’s deposed emperor, Haile Selassie, Mr Afro got into trouble for songs which compared Mr Meles’s lot to a brutal junta.

    The decision to release him was probably pragmatic. The government knows that it will have to win over unhappy young voters—Mr Afro’s fans—if it is to win next year’s general election convincingly. Officially, the singer’s release was for good behaviour. But it was probably also conditional on his avoiding political songs in the run up to the election. Mr Afro seems to be playing along, at least so far. He told the state media that he had a “nice” time in prison.

    The worry for the government is that the release of Mr Afro will now throw the spotlight back on its jailing of Birtukan Mideksa, a charismatic young opposition leader, judge and single mother. Ms Mideksa had already spent 18 months behind bars before she was jailed again earlier this year for denying that she had asked for a pardon. Her supporters say she has had to spend much of the year in solitary confinement.

  20. biruk
    October 10, 2009 at 6:12 pm

    we love you teddy u

  21. selam
    December 30, 2011 at 9:36 am

    i am Eritrean but Teddy Afro i a singer that i have listen and loved. i listen his songs for a long time and to hear and see him out from prison is the most HAPPY and wonderful time. it’s a bit late from me to wright this now, but from were i am staying different people have different ideas whether Teddy is free or not.
    but i know he is free and out. keep singing and enjoy the freedom.
    once again i am very gland for you and your family.

    Keep singing that is what i love the most!!!
    We All LOVE Teddy 😉

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