ADIS ABABA, Ethiopia
Ethiopian athletics legend Haile Gebrselassie says he is considering suing social media giant Facebook for playing a significant role in inciting recent violence in the country, state-linked Fana Broadcasting Corporate reports.
He said networking sites, particularly Facebook, have enabled the growing incidents of violence in the country.
‘’If the government of Ethiopia fails to sue Facebook, I may sue,’’ he is quoted as saying in an interview.
Protests have recently rocked the Oromia region after influential activist and journalist Jawar Mohammed said that attempts were made to endanger his life by removing his bodyguards.
Officials say 67 people were killed in the unrest while the number of those detained could increase as investigations into the violence continue.
“Since many died in a few days, this is enough to sue Facebook,” Gebrselassie, a long-distance legend in the country, is quoted as saying.
Facebook was the preferred social media platform used by activists in protests against the government that swept Abiy Ahmed to power.
But fake news, defamation and smear campaigns have long marred civil discussions on the platform.
The athlete turned investor is not new to controversy. He once declared that “democracy is a luxury to Africa”.