Ethiopians marked April Fools’ Day on Twitter with a steady stream of fake news headlines that imitated the “lies” of state-owned Ethiopian Television (ETv), the only national TV station in the African country. Using the hashtag #ETvDay, netizens accused ETv of “telling lies 365 days”.
It all started with the image below:
ETv made it to the UN international days list. #ETvDay in #EtvStyle. By @jomanex pic.twitter.com/8hMK76uWS8
— BefeQadu Z Hailu™ (@befeqe) March 31, 2014
Jomanex noted in Amharic:
አፕሪል ዘፉል የፈረንጅ ነው ኢቲቪ ግን <<የኛ>> ነው፡፡ ከስተማይዜሽን #EtvDay
— Jomanex Kassaye (@jomanex) April 1, 2014
Customizing: April Fools’ is for foreigners. “Ours” is ETv.
Soli joked about the next general election in 2015:
The coming 2015 national election is fair, free and democratic. #ETVday. #Ethiopia
— Soli ሶሊ (@Soli_GM) April 1, 2014
The disputed 2005 Ethiopian election ended in street protests, with 193 people killed and more that 30,000 people detained by security forces. In 2010, the election ended in a landslide victory for the incumbent Ethiopian People's Revolutionary Democratic Front, taking 99.6 percent of parliamentary seats. The opposition rejected the results and international observers said the election fell short of international standards.
Apparently, Ethiopia will meet one of its Millennium Development Goals – a set of development goals agreed upon at the United Nations’ Millennium Summit in 2000 – in record time:
“ኢትዮጵያ የንፁህ መጠጥ ውሃ አቅርቦትን ከምዕተ አመቱ ግብ ቀድማ እንደምታሳካ አንዳንድ ውስጥ አዋቂ ምንጮች ገለፁ” #ETvDay (Photo Arsi/Ethiopia – 2013) pic.twitter.com/GZ7iF9JvFx
— Zelalem Kibret (@zelalemkibret) April 1, 2014
Sources revealed that Ethiopia will provide a supply of clean water before the Millennium Development Goals deadline
#Etvday በጉለሌ ክፍለ ከተማ የሚገኙ ነዋሪዎች ከ20 ቀናት በላይ የመጠጥ ውሃ ማግኘት ባይችሉም፥ ልማታዊው መንግስታችን ያለ መጠጥ ውሃ እንዴት መኖር እንደሚቻል አስቀድሞ ስልጠና ስለሰጠን ተጎጂ አልሆንም ሲሉ ገለፁ።
— Tewodros Belay (@tewodros_belay) April 1, 2014
Gulelle sub-city residents who couldn't get drinking water for the past 20 days said they were not affected because they had been given training on how to live without water.
On the Crimea referendum, in which that region of Ukraine overwhelmingly voted to be annexed by Russia:
ሩሲያ ክሬሚያን የራሰዋ ግዛት ማድረግ ፤ ኢትዮጵያን ከእድገትና ትራንስፎርሜሽን እንደማያደናቅፋት አንዳንድ የአዳማ ነዎሪዎች ተናገሩ #ETvDay
— Yassin Nuru (@yassinahmed1) April 1, 2014
Some residents of Adama [a city in central Ethiopia] said that Russia’s annexation of Crimea won’t affect the Growth and Transformation plan of Ethiopia.
Mahlet categorized news into two types:
There is news and there is ETV news. #ETvDay
— Mahlet (@Mahlet_S) April 1, 2014
የዓለም ሕዝብ በሁለት ይከፈላል፤ ኢቴቪ በየቀኑ የሚያይ እና እግዜር ያተረፈው። #ETvDay
— BefeQadu Z Hailu™ (@befeqe) April 1, 2014
There are two types of people in the world: those who watch ETv daily and those who were saved by God from having to watch it.
Using the Ethiopian Tourism Commission’s former motto, ‘13 months of sunshine’, Saleh said:
13 months of sunshine & 13 months of government lies on a state-owned TV station. #ETvDay = April the fool @BBCAfrica @AJStream
— saleh (@2zworld) April 1, 2014
How many days does ETv own a year?:
In response to allegations by activists that today is #ETVday, ETV announced today is the only day of the year that it does not own. #April1
— Bon Bon (@BonayaBonso) April 1, 2014
Oromo Network's wished:
I expect mass resignation by ETV journalists today. #ETvDay #13monthsofEtvlies
— Oromo Network (@Oromo_NT) April 1, 2014
Enjoy the rest of the #ETvDay tweets here.