Ethiopia's ruling EPRDF coalition on Friday re-elected Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed as its chairman, its chief of staff said, further anchoring the authority of the 42-year-old leader as he pushes through sweeping political and economic reforms.
Abiy took power in April after his predecessor resigned following three years of unrest. He will now lead the ruling coalition until the next congress, which usually takes places every two to three years.
His re-election, by a secret ballot at the end of the coalition's three-day congress, had been expected.
He won 176 votes out of 177, according to a tally announced by Attorney General Berhanu Tsegaye, who is also a member of the coalition.
The congress also re-elected Demeke Mekonnen as Abiy's deputy.
The changes that he has introduced since taking office include making peace with arch-foe Eritrea, freeing political prisoners, pledging to open up the state-controlled economy and promising to overhaul the security services.
There has also been a surge in violence along ethnic lines since he came to power, however.
*This story has been edited by Ahram Online