Eshetu Melese performed in front of a sold-out crowd at Gonder University during an Easter Holiday event late last month. In front of a mixed audience of students and professors, he discussed media professionalism, rising living costs, and lingo-cultural diversity, all in the context of relocation. The young stand-up comic, unsurprisingly, made more sense and offered more substance to the arguments than the swarm of political activists and commentators who have become normal on our television screens.
On television today, there are more lies than truths in political discussion. Eshetu Melese delivered a political comedy that was well-informed, intellectual, and graceful. He appears to understand the difficult balancing act that exists between Ethiopia’s competing political forces and what appeals to young people.
He dabbled with sensitive topics such as ethnic strife and came away unhurt. This comes at a time when politicians are struggling to talk about historical, cultural, or political issues without alienating one another.