Monday, July 8, 2013

Why The Ethiopian Lawyers Decided To Sue Betty

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Someone who is either a member of the Lawyer's union planning to Sue Betty Aberra, or simply another Ethiopian who is well versed in their nation's law has left a comment on my article [here] stating why Betty should not be sued by well thinking lawyers. The comment rebuts my stand as follows;

Let me clarify some of the confusion on Ethiopian criminal code. U mention a number of excellent points (1,2,3) let see them one by one.

1.Betty did not have sex in public, she was inside a house.

In terms of legal definition, I believe betty did have sex in public! According to legal dictionary, in “public” define As an adjective, “ open to all; notorious. Open to common use. Belonging to the people at large; relating to or affecting the whole people of a state, nation, or community; not limited or restricted to any particular class of the community “.

it is worth to mention that the sexual encounter was broadcasting live (as it happens) for the viewers in Ethiopia. Many legal analyses believe that live broadcasting is indeed was consider public or open to public view. bear in mind! In the eyes of the law There is a big difference between seeing sexual act as it happen vs aftermath(video) of the seen.

Art 608 prohibit any sexual act “in a public place or in sight of the public, deliberately performs the sexual act or any other obscene act or gesture grossly offensive to decency or morals.”

2.The sex was not in Ethiopia. Isn't BBA shot on location in South Africa?

According to (Art -11) of Ethiopian criminal code explain the national territory of Ethiopia. which are comprises the land, sea and air. What does mean Crime committed on Ethiopian “AIR”? It includes broadcasting on radio, TV, satellite, planes etc…The extent of this area is determined by law. Also on Art 13 explains about offence committed in foreign country against Ethiopia. There are special codes that allow for prosecutor to use in special case. Many people who commits crime in foreign country were find guilty and convicted in Ethiopian court. So it is possible she could be trial in Ethiopia or in absence.

3.If they aren't adding Big Brother to the suit as well, then it should be struck out also.

According to lawsuit (affidavit) they also sue BBA for breaking Ethiopia’s broadcasting law Art-(609,610 ) which prohibit “(a) makes, imports or exports, transports, receives, possesses, display inpublic, of fern for sale or hire, distributes or circulates writing images, posters, films or other objects which are obscene or grossly indecent, or in any other way traffics or trades in them; or(b) advertises, indicates or makes known, by any means, how or from whom such objects may be procured or circulated, either directly or indirectly, is punishable.”

Finally, The whole thing about bettys law suit is not about punishing her but also to remind others not to do stupid thing on Facebook , twitter or on email. Good citizens have a moral as well as a legal obligation to abide by laws. If we fail to perform or live up to a legal duty, we can be criminally prosecuted or sued. That is exactly what happen for betty.

This rebuttal did not however address my last point about adding Bolt to the suit. As for the rest of it, I'm not even a quarter convinced. Stop watching or sue Big Brother, and leave Betty out of it.


  1. TheChronicled Like I said before, if its in their constitution, they are free to sue her. If its constitutional and legally proven as a crime, she has to face the law. They have absolutely nothing to do with Bolt. Even if it wasnt in the constitution, they can introduce it with her. Or they can ban participating in BBA by citizens and broadcast of BBA in Ethiopia. Thats my two kobo.

  2. You're right Myne, Big Brother is the major culprit. They should lobby their government to have the show cancelled or limited in their country. That was what Nigeria did a couple of years ago or so. That was after the Offunnka scandal, nobody took her to court joor.

  3. Ofunneka didn't do anything by the way; she was molested by Richard cos she was under the influence of alcohol...

  4. TV is now a country's geographical air-space? I thought that referred to skies/planes and such?
    ok o. mscheew.
    Well, the babe can always run to some Western country and seek asylum till all this hot air blows over. Instead of suing big brother for airing gratuitous images or something, they will go after the weaker connection..Betty.


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