President Obama made history this week as the first sitting U.S. president to visit Ethiopia. He was welcomed with flowers, flags and plenty of tweets.
How many tweets exactly? The #ObamaInEthiopia hashtag in particular has been used more than 10,000 times and counting in the past seven days. That’s a lot, but it pales next to the 85,000 tweets for #ObamaInKenya.
If you’re wondering why Ethiopian tweeters seem a bit behind the Kenyan Twitterati, who were paid a visit by the president over the weekend, maybe it’s a question of access.
According to the World Bank, the Internet penetration rate in Ethiopia is just 1.9 percent compared to Kenya’s 39 percent — that’s the percentage of Internet users out of the total population.
Here’s a roundup of what tweeters are saying about #ObamaInEthiopia:
A few tweeters took note of the stark difference between the Twitter reaction in Kenya versus that in Ethiopia:
And, of course, Ethiopians weren’t going to let the president off the hook after he attempted to speak Amharic, the country’s official language, during a joint news conference with Ethiopian Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn.
What President Obama was trying to say was “ameseginalehu,” which is “thank you” in Amharic.