MOWA confirms intend to prevent further unethical and illegal adoptions

Today ACT received copy of a letter sent by the Ethiopian Ministry of Women Affairs (MOWA) to the President of the Ethiopian Federal First Instance Court, dated 23/2/2011, that confirms that Ethiopia wants to prevent further unethical and illegal acts in relation to adoption.

The letter confirms the ‘rumours’ that MOWA will review 5 adoptions per day, instead of the previous 50 cases per day.

Below some quotes from the MOWA letter:

In a situation where there are a number of problems related to intercountry adoption, it would be mandatory to examine the pertinent of documents of prospective adoptive parents before opinions are given to the court of competent jurisdiction. We would also need to ensure that such documents are bona fide. Considering the present situation, it is found rather difficult to examine up to 50 files per day and, among these, to scrutinize files of prospective adoptive parents of 2 to 3 children to assess accuracy and to take time where additional investigation in the matter is warranted.

It is known that working with the executive organs at varying levels and the community to avoid the unethical and illegal acts in relation to adoption is fundamental. There is also no doubt that taking time to investigate the processes of adoption is highly important to decrease the incidences of adoptions pursued in an illegal manner using falsified documents and leading to violation of the rights and safety of children. Considering the current practice of adoption, the above stated predicaments exist and the Ministerial Office finds it necessary to examine these issues with emphasis. In the business process re-engineering conducted in the office, we find that the major objective should not be to work towards concluding international adoptions but to focus on strategic issues whereby decreasing the vulnerability of children and ensuring that children who are found to be vulnerable are provided with family and community based services. This would require deployment of the available human resource in strategic issues.
We find that it would be appropriate to examine a limited number of files on a daily basis and to give accurate and appropriate opinions as well as to focus on strategic maters in order that the rights and safety of children as recommended in the business process re-engineering.

Therefore is to notify that we would only be able to give opinions on a maximum of five adoption files effective as of March 10, 2011.

Letter MOWA:  HERE