Orientation & Geography

Africa, Ethiopia, Oromia

Yabelo (also spelled Yabello, Yavello, Iavello) is a town in southern Ethiopia. An alternative name for this town is Obda, which is also the name of a nearby mountain. Located northwest of Moyale in the Guji Zone of the Oromia Region (or kilil), this town has a latitude and longitude of and an elevation of 1857 meters above sea level. It is the administrative center of the Borena Zone since its division from Guji Zone in September 2002, as well as Yabelo woreda. This town is reported to have two gas stations, telephone service, a post office and a commercial bank, as well as at least one primary and one secondary school. The water supply for the town comes from a borehole constructed in 1986, a few miles out of the town. This borehole was designed to accommodate the population of the time, which was reported to be 15,000; however, by 1996 the population had grown much larger and was estimated at 35,000. In addition, it was reported that of the two boreholes only one was functional, and the town had 7 water points at different locations. To alleviate the problem of perennial shortages and improve the provision of water, it was proposed to construct additional boreholes the following year. Yabelo is also near the Yabelo Wildlife Sanctuary, known as a habitat of rare birds, including the endemic Stresemann's Bush Crow and White-tailed Swallow, as well as Swayne's Hartebeest.