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አንተ አልቻልክም: አዎ አንተ አትችልም!በሰይፍ መቅላት፣ረግጦ መግዛት… April 13, 2019

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
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1 comment so far

#አንተ_አልቻልክም ::

አዎ አንተ አትችልም!
በሰይፍ መቅላት፣
ረግጦ መግዛት…. አልቻልክም፤
አንተ እጅ መቁረጥ፣
እግር መንሳት.. አልቻልክም፤
ዘር ማጥፋት፣
ደሃን መግፋት…. ፈጽሞውኑ አልቻልክም፤
የኔን ተቀበል ያንተን ወዲያ ጣል፤
በአንተ ወርቅ እኔ ልድመቅ ማለት፤
ምን በወጣህ አንተ አትችልም፤
ስለዚህ አንተ አልቻልክም::
ጀግናን በስቅላት፣ ገሎ ለጅብ መስጠት
40 ምሁር ከወደቁበት አንስቶ ማክበር እንጂ 60 ምሁር ባንዴ መቅበር እንዴት ይቻልሃል? አትችልም!
ለመላው አፍሪካ መስራት እንጂ ምስኪኑን የኤርትራ ህዝብ መውጋት አይሆንልህም::
ማስታረቅ እንጂ ማራራቅ፤
ወንድም ህዝብ ደም ይፍሰስ አትልም!
ስለዚህ አልቻልክም::
የእናቶችን እንባ ማበስ እንጂ የራሔልን እንባ ማፍሰስ፤
የልጅ እሬሳ ላይ አስቀምጦ በሰደፍ አናቷን ማፍረስ፤
አንተ አይሆንልህም አመድ አፋሽ ቢያረጉህም::
የችሎታ ስሌቱ ይሄ ለሆነ ህዝብ አንተ አትችልም::
በቃ አትችልማ!!!
ሞታቸውን የሚጠባበቁትን ከእስር ለቀሃል::
ስለዚህ አልቻልክም:: ምክንያቱም ጀግንነት ለእነሱ መግደል ነዋ!
የተበተኑትን ከአለም ዙርያ ሰብሰበሃል፤
በፍቅር አቅፈህ አብረህ አልቅሰሃል፤
ያለመዱትን? የማያዉቁትን?
ስለሆነም አልቻልክም::
ለአህያ ማር እየሰጠህ አስቸግረሃል፤
አህያ የለመደችው ሳር እንጂ ማር አይጥማትም፤
ስለዚህ ችሎታ ይጎለሃል::
ፒንሳ የልህም፣ የሃይላንድ ዉሃ የለህም፤
የምድር ስር ጉድጓድ፣ጫለማ ቤት የለህም፤
ማስፈራርያ አውሬ የለህም፤
ሽንት የምትሸና የመብራቱ ልጅ የለችህም፤
ታዲያ ችሎታህ ምኑ ጋር ነው???
ሚድያውን ማፈን፣ የባለጌን አፍ መድፈን፤
እጅግ ተስኖሃል:: ስለዚህ አንተ ሳትቀር ባደባባይ ይሰድቡሃል::
ያሻቸውን ይጽፋሉ ይናገራሉ፤ሲሻቸው ይሰለፋሉ፤ ሲሻቸው ይሸልላሉ(አንተምላይ ሳይቀር)
“ሰማይ አይታረስ ንጉስ አይከሰስ ” ሲል ለኖረ ሰው፤
ለገዢዎች የአምልኮ ስግደት ሲሰግድ ለኖረ ህዝብ፤
የአጋዚን ዱላ ለጠገበ ሰውነት ይሄ እንዴት ይሰማሟል???
ስለዚህ አትችልም ይለሃል::
እጅ መንሻ ሲሰጥ ለኖረ ጉቦ ለለመደ፤
ሌባ ይጥፋ ስትል ሀገሩን የካደ፤
ባዕድ ነው ለሱ፣ የችሎታ ማነስ፣ ባህሉን የናደ::
እሱ ችሎት ለኖረው አንተ ምን አነካከህ?
ከባለቤቱ ያወቀ ቡዳ ነው እየሞተ ያገኛታል መተው ነበረብህ::
እኔ ልንገርህ ዶ/ር አብይ አንተ አትችልም!
ብዙ ሚሊዮን ህዝብ መምራት እንጂ ብዙ ሚሊዮን እብድ መንዳት አትችልም!
via OJA

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ANALYSIS: RISING DEATH TOLL, DISPLACEMENT AND PROTESTS IN EAST, SOUTH AND SOUTH EAST ETHIOPIA. WHAT LIES BENEATH? September 14, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
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2 comments

Thousands of Oromo are displaced from their homes in eastern Ethiopia

Liyat Fekade

Addis Abeba, September 13/2017 – Increasing numbers of civilian casualties due to military actions in parts of east, south and south east Ethiopia over the last weeks has now led to fresh protests, more deaths and displacements in several places in eastern Ethiopia.

On the other hand, federal and regional authorities have gone from denial to pointing fingers at one another to explain the root cause of what is visibly becoming an alarming breach of peace and stability in many areas bordering the Oromia and Somali regional states.

In the past few months, Addis Standard has been reporting on several incidents of raids by armed men who casually cross from the Somali regional state to villages and towns under the administrative jurisdiction of the Oromia regional state.

Addis Standard interviewed local residents in several towns and villages, including Chinakson, Mieso, Deder and Gursum in east and west Hararghe; Moyale, Liben and Gumii Edelo in Guji Zone in southern Ethiopia; as well as in Sewena, Meda Wolabu and Dawe Serer woredas (district zones) in Bale, south east Ethiopia, on several occasions since March 2017.  Almost all the people interviewed say armed men who are members of the “Liyu police” force were often the culprits of cross border raids that ends in the death of civilians.

Contentious border issues

The boundary between the two neighboring regional states has been a hotly contested affair since Ethiopia became a federal state in 1995.  In Oct. 2004 the two regions have conducted a border referendum, which was held to determine the residents’ choice for administrative status of villages and towns located adjacent the two regional states.

The referendum was conducted in 420 Kebeles located in 12 different Woredas across five zones of the Somali Regional state. According to the official results of the referendum, residents in close to 80% of the disputed areas have voted to be under the administration of the Oromia regional state. But claims alleging voting irregularities persist. And subsequent ethnic conflicts have led to the displacement in late 2004 and early 2005 of more than 80,000 people on both sides.

Although clashes of various degrees, particularly between the Borana Oromo and the Garii communities (often triggered by meager resources, such as shortage of water and pasture where available,) have remained the hallmark between the two communities in Moyale and its environs, locals in various places claim cross border raids by armed men became much more frequent and have contributed in fueling these conflicts, especially after the establishment of the “Liyu Police” in April 2007.

In March 2017, as attacks against civilians intensified and were solely blamed on border disputes, Addisu Arega Kitessa, head of the Oromia government communication affairs office, said the result of the referendum were “final” and will not be altered.  Addisu also blamed the “raids by armed men” as economic in nature. “After attacking the areas, these armed militiamen engage in looting of properties.”

And in April 2017 Abdi Mohamud Omar, a.k.a, Abdi Illey, and Lemma Megerssa, presidents of Somali and Oromia regional states respectively, have signed an agreement to end “border hostilities”. Three months later on August 19, the Oromia regional state said that as part of that agreement, of the 68 contested towns and villages between the two regions, 48 were returned to be under the administration of the Oromia regional state. And that “border issues were resolved and peace was restored.”

Recent escalation 

As of late however, the somewhat sporadic military raids due to border and economic issues and have not only intensified but took a different shape.

Usman Omar, one of the eight local elders who traveled to Addis Abeba from East Hararghe Zone, Gursum Woreda to file complaints at the federal house of federation warned in an exclusive interview with Addis Standard that “the situation in the region [was] very bad…we have been under the Oromia Regional state since the 2004 border referendum [because] we [chose] to but we are forced to pay a heavy sacrifice for that.” By the time the elders were in Addis Abeba looking for answers, an attack by armed men has left seven civilians dead in Chinakson in east Hararghe and its environs. Chinakson has always been under the Oromia regional state and local residents do not believe the attack was motivated by a “non-existing border conflict.”

Blames, more deaths, displacement and protests

Residents in all these areas who either contacted or were interviewed by Addis Standard speak in unison and anger regarding the role of the “Liyu police” in fueling the conflict. However, despite growing pressures both from the residents and online Oromo activists, officials from the Oromia regional state have refrained from pointing fingers at this paramilitary elite force, until Tuesday September 12 that is.

On Monday September 11, Selama Mohammed, Gursum woreda administrator, and Mohammed Abdurahman, former security affairs deputy head of Deder town in east Hararghe, as well as a Tajudin Jamal, a member of the Oromia police in Harar, were taken from their car while en route to Harar from Jijiga, the capital of the Somali regional state. According to the locals, they were taken to a police station by members of the Somali police force together with “Liyu police”. Selama Mohammed and Tajudin Jamal were found dead in Bombas, half way between Harar and Jijiga, while Mohammed Abdurahman got hurt while escaping. He is now admitted to Dil Chora referral hospital in Dire Dawa.

The incident triggered mass protests in several cities on Tuesday, the sternest being in Deder and Gursum, the later where Selama Mohammed and Tajudin Jamal were known by the locals as “men of the people”, according to Abdi Dulee Mohammad, a resident of the town who spoke to Addis Standard by phone. Protesters were chanting “down, down Woyane,” the Tigriyna term used to refer to TPLF, the all too powerful member of Ethiopia’s ruling party EPRDF. “The young people who went out to the streets to protest know that “Liyu Police” is the creation of TPLF as a gift to Abdi Illey. We all know that,” Abdi Dulee said.

According to Abdi Dulee, the locals have increasingly become resentful of the extrajudicial stretch by members of the “Liyu Police.” “Sometimes girls as young as 12 are taken by these men even in peace times,” he said, “there is a lot of anger and no peace will come unless they are removed.”

The “Liyu police” was created in 2008 to operate in the Somali Regional State (SRS) which had its own regular police force of its own. Its creation preceded an attack in 2007 by the Ogaden National Liberation Army (ONLA), the armed wing of the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF) in a Chinese oil field that killed 74 members of the federal army and nine Chinese engineers.

(ED’s Note: For more on the dynamics involving the role of “Liyu Police”, please read this analysis  published on Addis Standard as part of our continuous coverage).

 But, the role of the “Liyu police” came to another twist when online activists posted an ID card of a captured armed man called Shune Kherow Abdi, who is described on the ID as a member of the National Army of the neighboring Republic of Somalia. The information was later on confirmed by Addisu Arega Kitessa, head of the Oromia government communication affairs office, who posted the ID with short note saying that the person is indeed a member of the Somalia National Army.

“This incident not only complicates matters but also calls for a careful reading of the dynamics of the conflict in the area that involves more than 1000 km shared border between the two regional states in Ethiopia,” said a political science professor at the Addis Abeba University (AAU), who wants to remain anonymous. According to him, the creation of “Liyu Police” has “outlived its purpose, if there were any. It is time the federal government revisits the presence of such police force in the region not only because members of the “Liyu Police” are repeatedly accused of rights violations previously in Ogaden and now in Oromia,  but also because of the regional dynamics and Ethiopia’s relationship with the neighboring Somalia.”

Blames and counter blames

Officials from the Somali regional state do not only loath allowing access to mainstream media but also maintain a habit of selectively granting access to pro-government journalists, bloggers  and commentators to disseminate choreographed information. Our repeated attempt to get interviews in the past two weeks bore no result so far.

But on Tuesday Sep. 12, the VOA Amharic held a rare interview with Edris Ismael Abdi, head of the Somali regional state Communication Bureau.  What he said during the interview gave many a chill.

Edris Ismael Abdi was not only willing to provide adequate response to the questions, but threw alarming accusations of mass killings and torching of villages orchestrated by what he claimed were members of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) in coordination with officials of the Oromia regional state and Oromo online activists, particularly Jawar Mohammed. Edris also personally criticized Addisu Arega Kitessa of partnering with OLF and Jawar to “destabilize Ethiopia”. He also accused Addisu of “forging evidence” in reference to the ID card; and went on to accuse the Oromia regional state of being staffed by “officials who sympathize with OLF’s ideology.”

However, Edris’s tirade fell flat when asked if he was willing to provide solid evidence. “I don’t have it compiled at the moment,” he said, but insisted “their deeds bear witness.” He also said he can provide evidence of captured rebels who were held under police custody.

Addisu on his part countered the statement from Edris and spoke about the “negative role” being played by members of the “Liyu Police.” This was the first time Addisu spoke of the involvement by the “Liyu police”. “What is happening is not what Edris said was happening. Members of the “Liyu police” are crossing over to villages under the administration of the Oromia regional state and are attacking civilians. The people are witnesses for this.”  He also denied that there were areas where the OLF was active. “We are conducting investigations and are compiling a detailed report which will be released in the near future.”

Addisu further explained about the progress of redrawing contested areas, which were the sources of previous conflicts. Later on, he wrote on his Facebook page with a link to the VOA interview and said: “It’s surprising to hear my friend Edris Ismael Abdi…is trying to defend Shune Kherow Abdi, a soldier from Somalia Republic captured in Moyale while killing innocent people. I hope this irresponsible statement is not an official statement from Somali National Regional State Government. It rather seems Edris Ismael’s personal opinion.”

But on Wednesday September 13, the Somali Regional state communication affairs bureau proved Addisu wrong when they posted on their official Facebook page a contemptuous statement accusing the Oromia regional state of having direct links with the OLF, an organization labeled by the federal government as a terrorist organization.

“This is a troubling turn of event”, said our interviewee from the AAU, who has written several academic papers on the fault lines of Ethiopia’s federalism.  “Whoever did that knows that this is an accusation the federal government will not take lightly given past experiences. They know that every Oromo dissenting voice within the country has been dealt a severe blow in the pretext of membership to OLF. So, if you are not concerned by this turn of event so far, you should now.”

Today afternoon, Addisu issued his response in his personal Facebook page in which he expressed his frustrations about, among others, the use of poor and inflammatory language in the statement from the Somali regional state, which “helps nothing but further fuel the situation.”

More death and displacement

Protests have taken place in several cities in eastern Hararghe yesterday and to a lesser extent today. Although reports indicate of heavy causalities, the exact numbers are hard to come by. According to Addisu, 18 people – 12 from Somali and 6 from the Oromo ethnic groups – were killed in just one day yesterday during a protest by angry local residents in Awoday, a commercial city in eastern Hararghe. The protesters took to the street after news of the killing of Selama Mohammed and Tajudin Jamal came out, according to Addisu.  Some 200 suspects were placed under police custody.

On Friday September 01 residents of Mieso town, west Hararghe zone, took matters into their own hands and engaged in a daylong fighting with members of the “Liyu Police”. The clash left “more than 30 people”, including “more than a dozen army members”, dead and several others injured.  “We couldn’t take the killings our men, the raping of our girls and the lootings of our cattle by bandits openly supported by the Liyu Police,” wrote Abdulatif Kererro, a resident of the town in a message sent to Addis Standard.

As chain of similar events followed, a fighting between local residents and what they continued insisting were members of the “Liyu police” quickly spread to the south and south eastern Ethiopia and has claimed unknown numbers of lives.

The youth in Moyale town of Guji zone, 795 km south of Addis Abeba, have come out en mass to fight against the taking of “our holy sites,” according to one resident. “For example, Gofa and Ia’ee are among our nine Tulas (deep wells) taken by the Garee community – a Somali pastoralist clan.” According to him, the taking over of these areas were not entirely driven by the Garee, “who lived alongside us for generations and, who, despite occasional competition for resource, never touched our sacred places,” rather, he says, it was “orchestrated and supported by the “Liyu police” and members of militia belonging to the Somali regional state for sheer reason of capitalizing on chaos.”   Relative calm has returned since the last “three days,” he said.

But one cannot say the same about eastern Ethiopia. Yesterday, around 600 ethnic Oromo residents of Tog Wajale (Wachale) in eastern Ethiopia towards the border with the Republic of Somalia, as well as hundreds from Jijiga town, the capital of the Somali regional state, were forced to flee their homes. Some have made it to Harar while others are arriving in several places such as Gursum in east Hararghe to take refugee.

The displacement has continued throughout today with some of the displaced telling disturbing stories of mutilation and killing of a woman and detention of men, according to DW Amharic.

The federal government has deployed members of the federal army in parts of eastern and western Hararghe as well as Jijiga. But the displacement has continued with thousands more said to have already been on the road.

Our interviewee from the AAU concurs with the decision by the federal government to send federal army members, but he is critical of the “root cause of the problem, which is the presence of a special force in a fragile region and the hope that it will serve as checks and balances – it is delusional. You cannot maintain peace and stability by a proxy force which operates in impunity.”

Other Ethiopians have taken to Facebook to denounce the special elite force. “The Ethiopian government can no longer justify the continued existence of the paramilitary force called ‘Liyu Police,’” wrote Awol Kassim Allo, a lecturer of law at Keele University. “There can be no legitimate reason for a country that plays an active part in regional and global peacekeeping operations to keep its own peace with a notorious paramilitary force known for its lethal ferocity.”

Although many, including Abdi Dulee and the professor from AAU, agree that removing the “Liyu Polcie’ may be the solution, other critiques are skeptical of the federal government’s willingness to do just that. “The federal government instigated the conflict to compromise Lemma [Megerssa], divert attention and consolidate the minority coalition,” wrote one such critique in a message. “The escalation would legitimize the federal government’s intervention in the person of Samora Yenus, [the federal army chief]. This would discredit OPDO, emboldens the military and equates Oromia, the biggest and largest national state with an aspiration to be a mainstream political force with Ethiopian Somali state, Ethiopia’s Chechnya.” He said he believed the federal government was “behind the escalation and the calculated neglect of the crisis.”

On Friday September 08, during a New Year press conference, Dr. Negeri Lencho, head of the federal communication affairs bureau, admitted that “there were other forces” operating in some parts within the two regional states. “We have information that recently lives were lost in some areas due to fresh conflicts. These fresh conflicts have nothing to do with border issues between the two regional states. Our information is that officials from both regional states are working on implementing to resolve the border issues. However, there are some instigation by some forces assigned by unknown actors,” Dr. Negeri said. He also said the federal government has placed the situation “under control.” But events in eastern Ethiopia until the publishing of this article prove him wrong. AS 

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Somalia: Will the Real Farmaajo Please Stand Up? June 2, 2017

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Ethiopian Empire, Ethnic Cleansing, Somalia.
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The recent visit by newly-elected President of Somalia Mohamed Abdullahi Mohamed ‘Farmaajo’ to Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, can be considered as unusual, not because the relations between the two countries soured in the aftermath of his election, but because he subtly campaigned for an anti-Ethiopian slogan on the eve of the 8 February presidential elections in Mogadishu. His supporters and many other Somalis had anticipated that Farmaajo would delay an early political engagement with the current Ethiopian regime led by the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF)/The Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). Farmaajo’s visit culminated in a press conference held together with the Ethiopian Prime Minister HailemariamDesalegn.

When one combines the discursive analysis with a psychosomatic assessment on the video clip of the press conference in Addis Ababa, it can be observed from the faces of the once overconfident TPLF/EPRDF policy-makers that they appear to be anxious about another – in addition to Eritrea, or even South Sudan or the Sudan – critical political façade from Mogadishu. This does not mean that they are unaware that Mogadishu government remains utterly toothless, but a small amount of criticism towards their behaviour and practices in the Horn in general and Somalia in particular stemmingfrom the new team in the Villa Somalia would add an insult to theinjury. Therefore, the approach from which the TPLF/EPRDF policy-makers could benefit most at this time is through appeasing Farmaajo and making him sleep with friendly but forged overdose diplomatic gesture.The speeches made in the news conference indicated that the TPLF/EPRDF regime in Ethiopia were not only sceptical about the new development in Mogadishu, but they were wary about what Farmaajo would put on the table. However, upon assessing him closely, they seem to have found out that he is not the man they feared.

The TPLF/EPRDF policy-makers were expecting Ethiopia to be the first country to which Farmaajo was to travel following his election. Instead, Addis Ababa became the seventh after Riyadh, Nairobi, Abu Dhabi, Djibouti, Aman and Ankara, in the capital cities that he visited thus far. The wide public support the Somali public welcomed Farmaajo’s election, which was itself a reaction towards the detested regime of Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud, has revealed to the TPLF/EPRDF policy-makers that they could not dictate, as they had done with the corrupt regime of Hassan Sheikh, with their own terms what they need from Somalia. Hence the importance to find a new route out of the anxiety in the TPLF/EPRDF inner circle generated by the Farmaajo’s unexpected election. I still recall vividlyafter the previous president Hassan Sheikh Mohamoud went to Jigjiga unannounced in early August last year, I met Farmaajo, sipping a tea at Sarova Panafric Hotel in one cool Nairobi afternoon. After reading to him my take on the visit from my mobile phone, I looked Farmaajo and saw his reaction was mild.

Influential Somali opinion makers have every reason to be a bit sceptical of any dealings with Ethiopia, but one has todraw to their attention to the fact that there is no such an ‘Ethiopia’ at the moment. The TPLF/EPRDF regime is currently in a weakposition, insofar as it suffers from internal power struggles exacerbated by the increasing Oromo and Amhara dissents. Historically, for so long, the Ethiopian political order hasbeen dependent for existence and survival on the character of a powerful ruler. Upon the death of the former Tigray rebel leader Meles Zenawi, the TPLF/EPRDF central committee failed to come up with a powerful successor at par with the deceased leader from the Tigray political actors within the ruling party. No need to note that HailemariamDesalegn is another DaherRayaale (the former accidental Somaliland president); Desalegnwas chosen to create a balance between the two Tigray groups vying for power tiresomely during the post-Zenawi period. Be that as it may, Ethiopia is still under the state of emergency that was declared in October last year as a result of riots instigated by the Master Plan project which attempted to displace a significant number of Oromos from their farming lands on the outskirts of Addis Ababa. The Oromo uprising, supported by Amhara unrest, created a confusion and chaos within the TPLF/EPRDF, leading to accusations and counter-accusations as reported by the suppressed print media.

Tourists and travellers are still cautioned not to venture into Amhara and Oromo regions unless that is necessary. The only region the TPLF/EPRDF authorities effectively (remote)-controls from Addis Ababa is the Somali region which, because of the divisive clan-based politics, they were able dividing the Somalis along clan, even sub-clan or sub-subclan lines in order to fish out from their persistent power and resource contestation. Consequently, the Somali region is next to Tigray region, which many (but not all) are obedient to the TPLF/EPRDF regime due to ethnic affiliation with the TPLF. This does not imply that people in the Somali region support the regime; they are on the contrary waiting for a momentum to articulate their own self-determination as was nearly achieved but missed in late 1994. In Addis Ababa last year, when I asked about the appalling human rights situation in the Somali region, several TPLF/EPRDF regime advisers told me they would kick out the Somali region’s monocratic president Abdi Mohamed Omar, known as ‘Abdi Ileey’, but they expressed a fear that his replacement may open a Pandora’s box. This is a clear testimony that, insofar as they keep a tight grip on the region, they would be fine with the open-ended oppression. However, they could not apply this harsh policy to the Amhara or Oromo regions where people are more united and politically well-informed in the Ethiopian politics than the pastoralist clanically-divided (mostly) nomadic Somalis in the region. When I visited Jigjiga in April last year, I felt amused that the peculiar yet parochial question was: which sub-clan is larger than that or this to cut the larger cake from the regional state?.

Reflecting on these empirical localised internal political nuances, the Somali-Ethiopian relations in the broader geopolitics or biopolitics warranta very close but critical re-reading to envisage Addis Ababa’s future manoeuvres in Somalia. Unlike foreign policies of the successive Somalia regimes, which have often been inconsistent, incoherent, incomprehensive and unclear, the TPLF/EPRDF foreign policy changes as the need emerge. It comes as no surprise that both political (and military) culture of the TPLF/EPRDF draws from a reformed rational political calculation that solicits to buy a brief interval in every time of transition. It seems on the surface that this philosophy is based on ‘do this now, but do the other with the right time’.

Farmaajo and his team do not seem to understand the fragile situation of the Ethiopian regime, let alone what is going on the inner circle or the behind-the-scenes. Most strikingly, they appear unable to read the subtle ways the history is profoundly manipulated to construct or craft something meaningful out of it. For instance, one wonders why Farmaajo’s team did not raise their concerns when the TPLF/EPRDF cadres put on his back during the press conference this clear message: ‘Welcome to Ethiopia, the Land of Origins’, which literally means ‘welcome to your land of origins’. From the Ethiopian ‘highlander’ historical point of view, Somalis are considered as were part and parcel of the Ethiopian Empire through the ages. One could recall Emperor Haile Selassie’s famous speech in QabriDaharre in 1956, in which he boldly stated to his audience that Somalis and Ethiopians are the same, since ‘we drank water drawn from the same river’. The Ethiopian Herald published at the time some Somali elders kissing his hand with scornful manner unaccustomed to then proud Somalis. Several highlander Ethiopian historians and other Ethiopianists stick to this day to the notion that Somalis were once part of Ethiopian Empire, which is a false premise that can be counter-checked with available archaeological evidence and historical findings that Afar, Oromo, Saho, Somali and other lowland ethnic communities in the Horn of Africa had been the founders and defenders of the Adal and Ujuuraan sultanates well before the Abyssinian intrusion in 1887.

Mohamed Haji Ingiriis

Mohamed Haji Ingiriis a Somali scholar studying Somali history at the University of Oxford. He can be reached at: ingiriis@yahoo.com

AS: ETHIOPIA’S GRADUAL JOURNEY TO THE VERGE OF CRISIS September 28, 2016

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Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

Addis Standard

“What is being seen right now is that people come out to protest, EPRDF kills. It is trying to govern by the force of arms, but the Ethiopian people are not going to accept that. If things continue this way, we are getting into a very dangerous road. Talking about development while refusing to protect the rights and freedoms of the people, who are the main instruments of development, is both insanity and an embarrassment. Any dictatorial regime can build infrastructure but development, in its essence, is intertwined with the rights and freedoms of the people who benefit from it. Unless EPRDF tries to seek its legitimacy from respecting these rights and freedoms, it is taking the country in a wrong way, to a very dangerous place where there might be carnages.”

ETHIOPIA’S GRADUAL JOURNEY TO THE VERGE OF CRISIS


gebru-asrat

Gebru Asrat

(Addis Standard) — Born in Mekelle, the Capital of the Tigray regional state in the north, Gebru Asrat became one of the early members of the Tigray People Liberation Front (TPLF), Ethiopia’s all too powerful member of the governing coalition, Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF). But Gebru left EPRDF in early 2000 following a major split within TPLF in the wake of the 1998-2000 war between Eritrea and Ethiopia. Prior to that Gebru served as the president of the Tigray Regional State from 1991 – 2001 and was one of the top executive members of the TPLF’s politburo as well as the executive member of EPRDF. After leaving EPRDF, Gebru established the opposition Arena Tigray and became its chairman in 2007. Today Arena Tigray is one of the member parties of the larger opposition block, MEDREK.  In 2014, Gebru has published an acclaimed book: “LualawinetEna Democracy Be Ethiopia” (Sovereignty and Democracy in Ethiopia).  Addis Standard’s

Addis Standard – In your 2014 book “Democracy and Sovereignty in Ethiopia” you argued that TPLF’s culture of secrecy had helped its eventual triumph in overthrowing the militarist Derg and most of the party’s followers were indoctrinated with the propaganda of Stalinist determination. What’s the context of that culture, if you will, in light of the current situation in the TPLF-dominated-EPRDF led Ethiopia?

 GebruAsrat – TPLF was initially formed to pursue a political struggle. In order to meet that political goal through military means, it had established an army. This is one of its features. In its early days TPLF was a Marxist Leninist party. An army needs prudence [and] caution; secrets are not needed to be passed to the opposing group or to the enemy. But there is also fierce centralism which comes from the Marxist Leninist ideology.

These two factors [contributed to TPLF’s culture of secrecy] and helped it for the success of the armed struggle. But later on, after the armed struggle came to an end [with victory] TPLF denounced the Marxist Leninist ideology, and its militarist approach was seemingly replaced by a political program. But what TPLF did was to remove the flesh from its Stalinism structure, not the bone and the skeleton.  It kept the skeleton so that it would help it to rule the people of Ethiopia. It did so by using the fundamental principles of centralism; there is the rule of one party, which now they call the dominant party under the guise of revolution ary democracy.  The party kept its culture of secrecy and its centralism principle because they are convenient to rule [with an iron first].All the talks about democracy, justice, equality and the rule of law were eventually abandoned. Although it somehow shifted the gear to Capitalism during the early days of its rule the transition was not clear either. The party didn’t completely abandon the old Marxist Leninist ways; it selected what it needed to rule, to maintain its power and sustained them. Transparency was lost and a highly centralized one party dominated system was established. This secretive nature of the dominant TPLF and its refusal to be open to the public has impacted the democratization process of the country. More than that the features it has brought from the Marxist Leninist ideology like centralism, the concept of a dominant party and revolutionary democracy has eventually hampered the road to democracy and gave way to our reality today in which one party does whatever it wants.

 AS – There are people who argue that TPLF betrayed its initial noble goals, which were its foundations, after it assumed power. But judging from what you just said above (its culture of secrecy and its loyalty to an out-of-date ideology) one could say that the formation of TPLF was essentially flawed from the very beginning. And it seems that the problems we are witnessing today are the manifestations of those flaws. Am I correct?

GA – We have to clarify this in two ways: there are those who argue that TPLF’s noble goals could have only been attained through [the guiding principles of] Marxist Leninist ideology. I was one of those who believed in this. I used to fully believe that other ways of democratization were wrong; that it would not bring equality, liberty and justice. It was a mixture of belief, philosophy and ideology. So people who saw [the party’s last minute conversion to capitalism] felt they were betrayed. Many of the old guard (the old cadres), were carved in this way, so they clearly felt betrayed. On the other hand there were those even in that time who asked [if TPLF] shouldn’t have to be a democratic organization in which a marketplace of ideas were entertained. People who saw things from this perspective felt like the Marxist Leninist ideology, in its essence, could not have brought democracy. These were people who felt betrayed from the very beginning. At the end both of them have lost. There is no democracy; and there was no Marxist Leninist as it was envisioned in the beginning. Those ardent Marxist Leninist ideology supporters were betrayed because at the dawn of victory when the rebel soldiers entered into the capital the ideology was not even to be mentioned. And those who yearned for democracy were also betrayed because we ended up having a system of one dominant party rule.

AS – In chapter two of your book you explained the rocky relationship that often existed between TPLF and other armed groups that were operating in the country during the armed struggle. As someone who has been in the inner circles of the TPLF both during the armed struggle and afterwards, how do you characterize this nature of TPLF as a party vis a vis its relationship with the other sister parties within the governing coalition of EPRDF?

 GA – Yes I have written that TPLF often ended its relationships with other armed groups, which did not identify with it, by force and war. That was during the time of the armed struggle. Now, these four parties that make up the EPRDF are sister parties. More than that they say they have the same program and objective. But even in that case, there is something that must be known:  these parties are not unified and it is not clear why. If they do not have a program difference, if they have similar national visions, if they do not have a principle or ideology difference, as they claim, they should have been one national party [or] should have formed a unity. But this didn’t happen because there is this notion that EPRDF can keep the interests of each party, so it stayed this way for 25 years.

As it is known, of the four parties the one with the highest influence and the most veteran is TPLF. The amount of influence TPLF has, or we should rather say had, on other parties is not a minor one. This is not visible during eventless and peaceful times. But when there is a problem, things start to surface. For example in 2000, when EPRDF as a governing coalition was hit by a serious crisis, the value of these parties began to be measured by their loyalties to the late MelesZenawi, or TPLF. The leaders of some of these parties have even found themselves in dangerous positions.  Senior party members who have a sense of independence were kicked out and were replaced by others. This is to say that during the times of peace, the parties appear to be equal. Gradually this led the umbrella party to become what we can call a one man tyranny. As a result every party or member, who is not loyal, has faced difficulties.

But now there appear to be changes following the death of MelesZenawi, which had a very big tactical implication to EPRDF. The late Meles was a leader who managed to control and rule all the parties as well as the army. After his death all the parties within EPRDF, or rather senior leaders within those parties, have nominated him/herself to be the next Meles, showing visible signs of an increasing distance between the four parties.

AS  – In the past intra-party or intra-region conflicts which are common in federal states like Ethiopia were effectively managed by TPLF/EPDRF. This was attributed to the absence of the role of opposition parties in any of the regions. Since EPRDF governs all the regions, it has found it to be easier to manage potential intra-party or intra-region conflicts. But recent regional squabbles, for example between the Amhara and Tigray regions, seem to be on the rise. These are not simply expressions of discontent by the people of the two regions.  They are rather conflicts between the two parties governing the two regions. What is at the bottom of this? These are two parties under the same umbrella. What does this say about the two parties which are seemingly loyal to the principles of the mother party EPRDF?

GA – We can call these parties one and at the same time four. They are one because they have a common program and a national vision. On the other hand they are parties formed to maintain the interests of their individual regional interests. So this problem, even if it was not as accentuated as now, was seen before, especially in border issues. There were problems about border demarcation between Tigray and Amhara in two particular places; one in Wolkait, specifically in the place called Dansha; the second around Agaw, in the area called Abergede. There were conflicts. At the end of the day what are these parties loyal to? Their own regions or the country in general? It is not clear. Even if we see them as members of one party, they are also four different entities. So they give precedence   for their respective regions. This in itself creates conflicts; here it is expressed in the form of border conflict. It might as well be expressed in a different form. In benefits, in budget, for instance.So it can stem from the regional interest each party is trying to pursue. But essentially the Wolkait situation can be resolved by following the dictates of the Constitution. The same with Addis Abeba and Oromia. They can be solved following the Constitution. But the questions raised by the public go beyond that. They are questions of basic rights and liberties. They are questions of justice. They are questions of governorship. But in EPRDF’s Ethiopia whenever there is a problem, there is a tendency to externalize the sources. They point fingers at others. They are even saying that the public movement we are seeing now is the doing of the Eritrean government, the doings of our enemies from abroad. I think it is pure insanity to assume that millions are bought by the enemy; it is insane to assume that the Eritrean government has the power, in our country, to mobilize all these people. This externalization is also visible in other ways; whenever there is a problem in Oromia, the others see it as the fault line of OPDO. Whenever there is a problem in Amhara, the others point their fingers at ANDM and so on. They do not see it as a national problem. So when big problems, like we are witnessing now, occur, they tend to pull each other. We have seen it in 2000. It was triggered by the Eritrean question and how sovereignty was handled. There are problems within one party, let alone a front of four parties that are not unified.

 

AS – Ethiopia is experiencing frequent protests almost in every corner. With that in mind some prominent veterans say TPLF/EPRDF is at a crossroads and they are calling for a reform from within. What is your take on that? Do you agree that their prescription of reform within the TPLF/EPRDF is what a better Ethiopia needs now?

In my view TPLF was at the crossroads for a long time now. It’s been a long time but now it is very clear. It is failing to even manage the situation in its own backyard. There are demonstrations, for example the one in Embasenet. There is public discontent. There are questions of absence of good governance and democracy, and the presence of rampant corruption. These problems, through time, have penetrated into the party itself. Last year in August and September when the TPLF held its convention, the questions were raised from within the party. Party members were saying that the party was not in the right track. They criticized TPLF for being so weak that it can’t even manage its own region properly let alone impact the wider country. These questions are still alive.  Now the situation is very critical. For an entire year, there have been public gatherings, public meetings by members of civil servants and the society at large. But as [Albert] Einstein said it well it’s insanity to do the same thing over and over again and expect a different result.  They have tried it for more than twenty years without a change. And now we have reached at a tipping point. This problem cannot be solved in a similar way unless there is a fundamental change in the country. So these people, my older comrades, appear to be concerned by this reality. I agree with the analyses they give about the presence of a critical situation in the country.  I see their initiation to do this as a much needed positive move. However, when we come to solutions they subscribed, I must say that, they have said what I have said personally and as a member of Arena Tigray Party, which is also a member of the larger Medrek. We, as a party, have long put what we saw as the solutions to the problems in Ethiopia on several occasions. Fundamental democratic change is needed, much different from what EPRDF is following right now. If there is no democratization in Ethiopia, the problems will keep on escalating and they will put the country in a very dangerous situation. So I agree with some of what they had to say personally. But there are also suggestions that revolutionary democracy is still right. I disagree with that. It is not right. It hasn’t been right. It never worked. It cannot be a means to cultivate democracy. In fact it chokes it to death. And those commentators are saying that they agree with the principles of the developmental state. This is a scheme to put the entire economy in the hands of the state; to put the land, the budget, the country’s wealth in the hands of the state to oppress the others more easily. So I don’t agree. I do not have any problem with the government putting its hand in the economy. But like the way it is now, when the government controls everything, it becomes wrong. But the main thing is they have seen it that the country is in a critical state. And there are some solutions they suggested, like mass public discussions. But I don’t have the naiveté to believe that EPRDF is capable of reforming itself. I don’t believe that. To be fair, these are not the only solutions they suggested. They also recommended the party to have a dialogue with other opposition parties and to open the political space, which I agree with. If EPRDF reforms itself it might be useful for it. However I, as an opposition, and as someone who is a member of a party representing an alternative way,  I say, as long as democracy is not practiced in its entirety, I don’t see a way out of this quagmire for Ethiopia. There will not be justice. A fundamental change is what is needed; not a mending reform.

AS – But do you believe TPLF/EPRDF is capable of reforming itself? The language of reform has been applied for over 15 years. It’s been that long since the late MelesZenawi himself admitted EPRDF was ‘rotten’ inside out. Can TPLF/EPRDF reform itself or is the fear that if it does it might bring in its own demise takes precedence? Which one do you believe in: is it the unwillingness or the incapacity to reform that’s holding it back?

In my view reform can come in two ways; from the forces within or from the outside public. In TPLF/EPRDF when they talk about reform, it is all about keeping the status quobecause on many of the important questions the party falters.  They believe any change must happen over the graves of the party. They say they are ready to debate but they are not open for debate because they are afraid; they work from the assumption that any change on the status quo will be dangerous for them.  They tried it after the split in 2000 and during elections in 2005, but the results became overwhelming. So they used all means to close until they ended up taking a 100 per cent of the parliamentary seats. They have managed to have eight million members in an attempt to control every village. The recent statement by Prime Minister HailemariamDesalegn can be read in this light. For over a year, he has been saying they have problems of all sorts. But recently he resorted to force as a means to relinquish these pubic demands. All he said was they have the military power and they can control the situation forcefully.  He didn’t solicit political legitimacy. He didn’t see democratization as a solution, unless nominally. So far the way TPLF/EPRDF follows is guided by the principle that it controls the army, the police and the intelligence to rule the country with an iron fist. So the pressures witnessed from within are not making TPLF/EPRDF to reform. Now we have to wait and see how the public demands are pressurizing them into having a reform.

AS – Perhaps getting into the bottom of the party’s way of governing the county may help us understand on whether or not applying the language of reform could yield any result. You have, for instance, served as the president of the Tigray Regional state for about ten years. And one of the long standing problems of TPLF/EPRDF is its failure to implement the federal system as stipulated in the constitution. You had a chance to see how exactly that was played out during your presidency. How do you evaluate, for example, the fault lines in the federal-regional nexus? And what’s its contribution to the current crisis?

GA – This is a good question. Constitutionally speaking Ethiopia is a federated country. There are authority levels and limitations between the Federal government and the Regional governments. But the Constitution is not functioning. EPRDF is not practicing the Constitution. The fundamental rights and freedoms stipulated in the constitution are not respected. They are being muzzled. Human rights, freedom of speech, freedom of assembly, freedom of organization, are to mention few. My opinion is that the government is not operating following the Constitution.  It must be known that EPRDF is a highly centralized party which has and follows its own program outside of the Constitution. There is nothing like revolutionary democracy in the Constitution; it is a liberal constitution. There is no centralism in the Constitution. The Constitution is designed in such a fabulous manner only to appease the public and the wider world. But what is practiced is EPRDF’s party program. The party releases so many regulations and directives and that is what is used to govern the county. Almost all these papers are written to ensure the hegemony of one party. And all the cadres are guided by these papers. The ‘shared-rule’ and ‘self-rule principles of federalism cannot work in a highly centralized party.  Let me make myself an example. [In 2000] the split within TPLF occurred. When the split occurred, I was the President of Tigray Regional government. I was elected by the Tigray people. But I was sacked by the central government.  This means that the people have no right at all. The party ousts, sacks anybody that it wants to. The regional government, the regional entity has no power at all. This didn’t happen only to me. Abate Kisho, the president of the Southern regions was sacked in a similar manner. In Benishangul and Gambella and Somali regional states the leaders are changed frequently by the order from the EPRDF office. This flawed operation of the Federal system is just one example. But it works in all aspects. The justice system suffers from similar fate as is the military. EPRDF’s central hand is stretched in every aspect.

AS – Often time people talk about first 2000 and then 2005 being the turning points or the downward spiral in the country’s democratic experiment. The implications of these assertions are that all was well before 2000. You were the President of a Regional government before the first turning point in 2000. Do you believe that the country was on the right track before that?

GA– There are two things here: on the one hand I was the President of a regional state, on the other I was a member of EPRDF’s central committee as part of TPLF’s Executive Committee. Decisions were always made not by the regional parliament but by the party’s Executive committee. After that happened, the decision was taken to the public. In what I mentioned earlier as democratic centralism, it is not possible to refuse this. Even if it was wrong, you can’t refuse it. Of course there are possibilities to convince the committeeby raising arguments but it was up to the committee, not the public. One of the flaws of the system, I believe, is this. The party members are everywhere. They are in the Federal system. They are in the civil service structure. And they decide based on the instructions that they receive from above, from the party. Not according to what the public demand and need in every aspect. It must be known that the cause of public resentment, especially now, is this. What the people need is one thing, the party’s interest is another. There is a gap. When I look back at what was happening in the party then, there were arguments and dialogues but when it comes to the relationship between the Federal government and regional states, the dominance lies within the party. It makes the decisions.

 

AS – Despite these blatant failure of the ruling party to implement the federalism arrangement many people, including some opposition parties, point their fingers at the ethnic (some call it linguistic) federalism to be the main cause of the problem the country finds itself today. What is your opinion of that? Do you think the federalism arrangement is something that is worth protecting or something to blame for the country’s problems today?

GA – I don’t agree with such accusations. Federalism can be arranged in various ways. Now, what we have here in Ethiopia is an ethnic Federalism arrangement. There can also be a Federal arrangement based on geography. But the main thing is not this; the main thing is whether there is a condition for the pubic to choose these freely. Is there a condition to protect the people’s rights and freedoms? I believe that is the fundamental thing. As long as there is no democracy, there is going to be a problem. I mean, if there is a democratic system, those things can be debated upon. If the people don’t like them, the people can change them. But in the absence of democracy, there can’t even be a debate. So what I say is the source to all problems is lack of democratic practices, rights and freedoms by and for the public. As I said earlier the current federalism is not practiced rightly.  It’s just nominal. Yes, people work in their own languages, they celebrate their cultures. But when it comes to essential decisions, the Federal arrangement is not functioning at all. As long as there is a dominance of one party, federalism, ethnic or geographical, cannot function. I don’t think the root of Ethiopian problems is this arrangement. Problems were there long before the system came in place.  TPLF and OLF and others started armed struggle in the absence of this arrangement. It was the lack of democracy. In fact what I believe is that, the structuring of the current system has lessened ethnic resentments.  What the Ethiopian people, including intellectuals should focus on is the absence or presence of democracy. Rights and freedoms must be respected. Without doing this all the attempts will be futile. What I am saying is that this is not the root cause of all problems the country is facing today. It is the dominance of one party and the lack of basic democratic practices.

AS When you say the dominance of one party, are you saying EPRDF in general or TPLF’s dominance over EPRDF?

 GA – To make it clear, I don’t think EPRDF is a non-existent entity. Their level of power might be different but OPDO is an existing party. ANDM is an existing party. I don’t think those parties are free from taking responsibilities from whatever is happening in the country. I don’t think they have no influence on what is going on. TPLF used to be the most influential one; I doubt if it is like this now. It’s not clear. When I see what is going on and ask if TPLF has the level of influence it used to have, I have [doubts].  But even if TPLF is the most influential party, the other three cannot be exempted from taking the blame.

 AS – What do you mean when you say TPLF might not have the level of influence it once has?  The protests in Oromia throughout the year and quite recently in Amhara have laid bare not only the level of public discontent, but also the deep seated dissatisfactions by the two parties representing the two regions, the OPDO and ANDM against the all too powerful TPLF. Do you agree with that?

 GA – I find it difficult to answer this question with full certainty. However I tried to explain it earlier. Whenever there is a problem, pointing fingers is very common. In my opinion, for the lack of democracy in the country, for the muzzling of rights and freedoms, and for the rampant corruption all member parties of the EPRDF are blameworthy. They participated in the thievery; they have participated in the oppression so they can’t claim innocence. But as I said earlier pointing fingers is very common. TPLF points its fingers at others. It says it has been betrayed as the recent article on Aigaforum claims. It is nothing more than casting blame on others. And the fact is in a union that was not formed in a democratic way, this is inevitable.  Because whenever individuals or groups become stronger the others develop a sentiment of antipathy. When I see TPLF and others, I don’t think the lower level party members think like the leadership. I don’t think the leadership has enough control, influence, on its own members, like it used to have. It’s weak now. Each party has more than a million members. Those members can’t even control what’s going on in oneKebele, or in one Woreda. So when this happens, instead of saying this happens because of us, because of the roads we follow, they say it’s all about failed implementation, even worse, they say it’s because some betrayed us. It’s an inevitable accusation.

AS – What do you think is the best way to address the country’s not only political and economic but also historical crisis without causing a regrettable outcome? What do you see as prescription for redemption, if you will? 

GA– As I see Ethiopia is a country at the verge of crisis. In this regard I agree with what my previous comrades have written about. The crisis is created. In this reality, there are things not just politicians but also the general public must think about. The first one is that in Ethiopia there is lack of one strong guiding vision. So the main thing, I think, is to have a consensus of vision for the country. When I say this I am not denying the fact that each party has its own vision. But it has become a country without a vision which can gather people around. So in order to salvage the country out of this crisis, we must have more dialogues, more ideas. We need ideas, strong ideas that can gather the public together. But since ideas are not enough, strong institutions are needed. Strong parties are needed.  By this I don’t mean dominant party.I think Ethiopia lacks strong national parties that can gather people of all spectrums together. Some of them incline too much to their region. Some others deny the questions of nations and ethnicity; they claim to be national but their influence doesn’t transcend from one region. So I don’t see alternatives in which strong parties with strong vision can be created. We evaluate EPRDF on many parameters and we understand that the party is finding it difficult to bring forth solutions to the problems the country is facing. Or we are saying the party is in crisis. But we must also ask does the alternative certainly has principles and organizations that can bring forth change? We can’t bring in change using the same ideas. What Ethiopia needs is a change of ideas. Besides that there is yet another question that must be raised. Before now, during the Derg and Imperial regimes, there were problems in the country such as lack of democracy, lack of justice, lack of equality. But the country somehow survived these problems and stayed as one. We should be careful that the current situation isn’t any different.  What I see now dominantly, among the radical opposition and EPRDF alike, is the proliferation of racial or ethnic hatred. We can see that in the state owned and affiliated media there is a proliferation of mixing the ruling party with the people. This will lead us to irrevocable conflicts. There is no weak area in this regard, even if it is small. But sadly EPRDF is using it to its advantage. To put it bluntly, TPLF is doing a lot of mobilization saying to the [Tigray] people that chauvinists are going to invade them and they should gather around it. It is trying to make the [Tigray] people believe that all the critiques it is receiving are critiques not against the party but against the [Tigray] people. This is very dangerous. Similarly there are others who mix up the party and the people and spread rumors that the Tigayans are about to do this or that to this or that people. The opposition finds it easy to collect followers by telling people that what’s happening to them is done to them by Tigrayans. The ruling party is doing the same. They have been doing it for quite a long time actually. Every time an election approaches they tell the people in Tigray that chauvinist Amharas are going to engulf them.  And they tell the Amhara that narrow Oromos are coming to destroy them. And for the Oromo they say the chauvinists are going to sabotage them. This is an age old way of the party. And I believe that it has contributed to what is going on now. If religious leaders in this country were not followers and executers of EPRDF’s program who never slide an inch from the party’s dictates, they would have been important in looking for solutions for the country’s problems. The intellectuals and religious leaders must be part of the solution. So what I see as a strategy to get out of this quagmire is there must be an organization with a strong vision which can be an alternative to the EPRDF and which can gather the people of Ethiopia around this vision.

 

AS – Owing to this monumental failure to uphold the rule of law, many people say the ruling party in Ethiopia has forced its relationship with the people of Ethiopia to become violent. Your own party Arena Tigray has been pushed left and right to a point where peaceful politicking has become virtually impossible. This is leading many people to say that the idea of armed struggle is now becoming the last resort to deal with EPRDF. As a party which is denied the means to a peaceful struggle, do you see Arena Tigray responding to EPRDF’s dominance in what many say is the only means EPRDF understands: armed struggle?

 GA – Your question is right. EPRDF is pushing the people, especially the youth, to the extreme. It made me recall a Central Committee member we once had. He raised an argument that with EPRDF in power it’s impossible to have a peaceful struggle. But we said we have to use the political space that is available, as narrow as it can be, and conduct a peaceful struggle. Otherwise the other way is going to unleash calamity. He finally moved to Eritrea to join TIMIHT. This man represents a way of thinking among the youth. And the narrower the space gets, the more the youth are pushed to pick up armed struggle because they see what they see; they believe peaceful struggle is just getting to jail. But I don’t believe in that; I believe the current movements [the protests in various parts of the country] are essentially peaceful. I have a belief that it is possible to force the government to change. I also believe that it is possible to execute policy in a peaceful way.

Right after the election [in 2015] we have three of our members killed including a member of our central committee here in Addis Abeba. Another of our member was poisoned to death and we have about twenty members in jail. Incidents like this make peaceful struggle difficult. But paying the prices requires us to continue the peaceful struggle. And the protests we are seeing now, I count them as part and parcels of peaceful struggle. Other than that I don’t see anything but bloodshed from armed struggle.

AS – Where is EPRDF taking Ethiopia to?

gebru-asrat

 GA – This is a very difficult question. A hard one. In its own book, it is taking the country to development, to wealth, to job creation, to the providing of health services and what have you. That’s what it says. Of course there are some changes in some regards. This is undeniable. Access to health and education is better than what it used to be. There are foreign and domestic investments. But this cannot be a source of legitimacy for a regime. The main thing is: is there democracy? Are the rights and freedoms of people protected? A person who owns a cart feeds the horse that pushes the cart but it doesn’t mean that he gives the horse freedom. And humans are different from horses, from animals. Freedom is the main foundation and element of development. What is being seen right now is that people come out to protest, EPRDF kills. It is trying to govern by the force of arms, but the Ethiopian people are not going to accept that. If things continue this way, we are getting into a very dangerous road. Talking about development while refusing to protect the rights and freedoms of the people, who are the main instruments of development, is both insanity and an embarrassment. Any dictatorial regime can build infrastructure but development, in its essence, is intertwined with the rights and freedoms of the people who benefit from it. Unless EPRDF tries to seek its legitimacy from respecting these rights and freedoms, it is taking the country in a wrong way, to a very dangerous place where there might be carnages.


Click here to read related article: The Conflict between the Ethiopian State and the Oromo People

The Oakland Institute: Miracle or mirage? Manufacturing hunger and poverty in Ethiopia September 27, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in #OromoProtests, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Land and Water Grabs in Oromia.
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Odaa OromooOromianEconomist

Oakland Institute

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Miracle or mirage? manufacturing hunger and poverty in Ethiopia


Oakland Institute, 27 September 2016

 


As months of protest and civil unrest hurl Ethiopia into a severe political crisis, a new report from the Oakland Institute debunks the myth that the country is the new “African Lion.” Miracle or Mirage? Manufacturing Hunger and Poverty in Ethiopia exposes how authoritarian development schemes have perpetuated cycles of poverty, food insecurity, and marginalized the country’s most vulnerable citizens.

A key government objective is to make Ethiopia one of the largest sugar producers in the world. Several sugar expansion plans are underway, including the colossal Kuraz Project in the Lower Omo Valley, which will include up to five sugar factories and 150,000 hectares of sugarcane plantations that rely on Gibe III Dam for irrigation. Studies show that Gibe III could reduce the Omo River flow by as much as 70 percent, threatening the livelihoods of 200,000 Ethiopians and 300,000 Kenyans who depend on the downstream water flow for herding, fishing, and flood-recession agriculture.

Miracle or Mirage? offers lessons from the deadly impact of sugar and cotton plantations in the Awash Valley in the Afar Region, established in the 1950s. The projects drastically reduced land and water availability for people and cattle, undermined food security, destroyed key drought coping mechanisms, and stirred up violent conflicts between different groups over the remaining resources. The establishment of plantations was a critical factor in the 1972-1973 famine, resulting in the deaths of nearly 200,000 Afar people. These findings raise serious questions about the government’s logic behind sugar expansion, with $11.2 billion to be invested by 2020, and much more for irrigation schemes and dams – Gibe III alone cost Ethiopia $1.8 billion.

Using quantitative evidence, the report also details how plantations established in the Awash Valley have been far less profitable than pastoralist livestock production, while carrying massive environmental costs including the depletion of vital water resources.

miracle-or-mirage-manufacturing-hunger-and-poverty-in-ethiopia-study-of-the-oakland-institute-p2

Ogaden: ONLF: The Vicious Ethiopian Regime is Instigating Civil Wars between Somalis, Oromos and Amharas September 27, 2016

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Odaa OromooOromianEconomistPAFD NEWSONLF

The Vicious Ethiopian Regime is Instigating Civil Wars between Somalis, Oromos and Amharas

ONLF Press Release,  August 12, 2016


ONLF

After millions in Ethiopia, particularly from Oromo, Amhara and other nations staged peaceful demonstrations during last week and in November last year, the Ethiopian regime is resorting not only to killings, arbitrary detentions and inhumane torture of the peaceful demonstrators, but the regime is unleashing a very sinister plan that is intended to instigate civil war among the different nations in Ethiopia.The regime is using the Liyu police in border areas between the Somali Territory and Oromia to suppress Oromo protesters. What is even more worrying and heinous, is that the regime is using the Somali administrations in Ethiopia, Djibouti, Northern Somalia and others areas in the Somali republic to detain, kill and harass Oromo and Amhara workers. In some towns in Ogaden, the Ethiopian army and associated militia’s detained or summarily executed scores of people of Oromo, Amhara descent or other nations from Ethiopia in support of the TPLF regime. Similarly poor workers are being detained illegally, forcefully transferred to Ethiopia or killed in Somali inhibited territories in the Horn of Africa, including Djibouti. Ogaden Somali Elders and civilians protested against this and were brutally beaten by the Ethiopian Security forces.

This is a deliberate policy to create hatred between Somalis and other Ethiopian communities, in order to forestall any future cooperation. However, such a policy is doomed to fail since Somalis in Ogaden decided that they share common interest with all the oppressed nations in Ethiopia, regardless of Ethnicity or religion. The Ethiopian regime has been committing Crimes against Humanity and War Crimes in Ogaden and has destroyed the wellbeing and livelihood of hundreds of thousands civilians in Ogaden since 2007 and the Somali people are resisting the regime on a daily basis. Unfortunely, innocent Somalis were also targeted in other regions during the protests.

Similarly, ONLF calls upon all national administrations in Ethiopia and their associated militias’ to desist from supporting the regime against the popular resistance and side with the people. The days of the regime are numbered and they shall start thinking about the future.

ONLF calls upon the international community to stop supporting the current regime in Ethiopia by either funding it or not making accountable for its blatant crime against all peoples in Ethiopia.

Finally, ONLF and the Somali people in Ogaden fully and unreservedly supports and sides with all oppressed people in Ethiopia and will not spare any effort to educate Somalis of the traps that is being set up by the Ethiopian regime. Ogaden Somalis and elders have already started calling for all Somalis to stop supporting the callous regime in Ethiopia and participate in the legitimate and genuine uprising against the unrepresentative regime in Ethiopia.

Issued by

The Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF)

Member of PAFD and UNPO

August 12, 2016

New Report from State Department Details Widespread Human Rights Abuses in Ethiopia. #OromoProtests May 11, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Uncategorized.
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New Report from State Department Details Widespread Human Rights Abuses in Ethiopia

Oakland Institute, 9 May 2016

Suruma people of the Omo Valley are being tortured by  fascist Ethiopia (Agazi) foreces because  they protested their land being taken for Sugar  plantation

 

Oakland, CA—The United States Department of State recently released its annual Country Reports on Human Rights Practices, including an in-depth account of the human rights situation in Ethiopia. The report confirmed many of the ongoing human rights violations that the Oakland Institute has detailed in Ethiopia, including: abuses associated with the Government’s villagization program; restrictions on basic freedoms of expression, assembly, association, movement, and religious affairs; restrictions on activities of civil society organizations; and more.

“The US State Department report confirms that countless human rights abuses are being perpetrated by the Ethiopian Government,” said Anuradha Mittal, Executive Director of the Oakland Institute. “It also highlights appalling issues associated with Ethiopia’s criminal system, such as the use of torture, a weak and politically influenced judiciary, life-threatening prison conditions, and the use of electric shocks and beatings to extract confessions.”

Caught in this horrific system are thousands of journalists, political opposition members, land rights defenders, students, and indigenous and religious leaders, who have been unlawfully detained and arrested under Ethiopia’s draconian Anti-Terrorism Proclamation.

Included in the State Department report are the cases of Ethiopian Muslim leaders, detained and charged under the Anti-Terrorism Proclamation for participating in protests for religious freedom; and of land rights defenders Omot Agway Okwoy, Ashinie Astin, and Jamal Oumar Hojele who were arrested en route to a food security conference in Nairobi and charged under the Anti-Terrorism law.

Countless more stories were not included in the report, including that of indigenous Anuak leader Okello Akway Ochalla, who was abducted in South Sudan and forcibly taken to Ethiopia, in complete violation of extradition treaties and international law, for speaking out about abuses perpetrated against the people of Gambella, Ethiopia. On April 27, 2016, after more than two years in jail, Mr. Okello was handed a nine year prison sentence.

“Over the past years, countless indigenous communities have been evicted from their land to make way for large-scale land grabs in Ethiopia,” commented Mittal. “These displacements are happening without the free, prior, and informed consent of the impacted populations, and when communities resist, they are forcibly removed by means of violence, rape, imprisonment, and the denial of humanitarian assistance, including food aid. To make matters worse, the people who stand up and fight for the rights of those communities – people like Mr. Okello and Pastor Omot – are being jailed. This must stop.”

“Ethiopia is the United States’ closest ally in Africa and the second largest recipient of US overseas development assistance in Africa,” she continued. “In these unique roles, the US has both the power and the moral responsibility to ensure that basic human rights and the rule of law are upheld in the country. Through its report, the United States acknowledges the widespread human rights violations taking place in Ethiopia. The question is: when will the US finally do something to address this egregious situation?”


http://www.oaklandinstitute.org/new-report-state-department-details-widespread-human-rights-abuses-ethiopia


 

Al Jazeera: Politics, War & Conflict in Ethiopia: ‘Ethiopia is boiling’ May 8, 2016

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Odaa Oromoo

Abdirahman Mahdi of ONLF: ‘Ethiopia is boiling’

Senior leader of Ethiopia’s Somali rebel group discusses a growing alliance of groups seeking self-determination.

Al Jazeera, 07 May 2016

Abdirahman Mahdi of ONLF

http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/talktojazeera/2016/05/ethnic-somali-abdirahman-mahdi-onlf-ethiopia-boiling-160507083254836.html


Ethiopia, Africa’s oldest independent country, is one of the West’s closest allies in the Horn of Africa.

Bordering Kenya, South Sudan, Eritrea, Djibouti and Somalia, this vast nation is home to about 80 different ethnic groups, many with their own languages and customs.

Despite Ethiopia’s demographic diversity, the country’s power structure in mainly centralised in its capital Addis Ababa, located in the heart of the country.

And this is resented by some of Ethiopia’s many different ethnic groups.

To the far east of the country lies Ethiopia’s Somali region. The people there have Ethiopian nationality but identify as Somalis. Many there say that their desperately poor region is starved of resources.

This has led some to rise up and challenge the government.

Self-determination struggle

A movement for self-determination for Ogaden, which is officially known as the Somali region, led by the Ogaden National Liberation Force (ONLF), began in the mid-1980s. ONLF took up arms a decade later.

Their attacks led the Ethiopian government to send in troops and to carry out what many describe as a brutal crackdown on the some five million ethnic Somalis who live in this arid region.

Thousands of people have died in a struggle that few outsiders are allowed to witness. It’s an invisible conflict that has cost lives and livelihoods, and despite several rounds of talks in recent years, has no end in sight.

After decades of conflict with little or no progress, should ONLF give up their fight?

“How long did South Africa [take to] defeat Apartheid? When you are fighting for your rights, time is not an issue,” Abdirahman Mahdi, a founding member and the foreign secretary of ONLF, tells Al Jazeera.

The only policy in the Somali region they have is to dominate it, to exploit the oil, to consider the people as just a nuisance, and to exploit our resources and kill our people. Even if they allowed 10% of our rights in 1994, this fighting would not have started.

Abdirahman Mahdi, founding member and foreign secretary of the Ogaden National Liberation Force (ONLF)

“My father was fighting for our rights and my children will fight for our rights. So for us, justice is the only solution – there is no other way.”

Madhi denies that ONLF wants to secede from Ethiopia and claims this is “a misconception that’s being propagated by the Ethiopian regime”.

ONLF’s fight, he says, is about seeking the “right to decide our future”.

The movement wants the “right to self-determination, including even leaving the country”. ONLF “cannot decide what the Somali people want. What we are saying is let them be given their right to decide.”

He says: “Free choice is not secession; free choice means you can choose the right to live together in peace and dignity.”

ONLF’s fight is not with federalism nor with ethnicity, Madhi says. “The issue is when one group wants to dominate the rest of the people in Ethiopia. So we are going to dismantle that.”

Madhi speaks of the marginalisation of Ethiopia’s Somali region. “[Until] recently, we had only one secondary school after 100 years of Ethiopian occupation, we had one hospital … Our women have no maternity services.”

The region, he says, suffers from a brutal trade and aid embargo and a military occupation, which he alleges has resulted in the rape of 30% of the region’s women and more than 30,000 detentions.

“How can you develop people you are raping?” he asks.

Madhi says ONLF is an Africanist movement, the struggle is expanding and the group is now working with other ethnic groups in the country by staging “peaceful mass demonstrations”.

“Our alliance is now expanding,” he says. “Like the Arab Spring, we are going to start insurrection all over the place. Ethiopia is now boiling … The regime is now in disarray; they’re divided. The people of Ethiopia have now risen up. They want their rights. We are tired of one clique dominating the rest of Ethiopia.”

On Talk to Al Jazeera, Madhi discusses the future and vision of ONLF, the criticism that he is out of touch with the needs and situation of the people in Ethiopia’s Somali region now that he lives abroad, and he responds to allegations of human rights abuses committed by ONLF and that the group is armed and trained by Eritrea.


http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/talktojazeera/2016/05/ethnic-somali-abdirahman-mahdi-onlf-ethiopia-boiling-160507083254836.html

AFAR PEOPLE IN ETHIOPIA FACING UNPRECEDENTED CATASTROPHIC SITUATION April 22, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Afar, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley.
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Odaa OromooAfar woman

AFAR, ARDUF

 


AFARS FACING UNPRECEDENTED CATASTROPHIC SITUATION


PRESS RELEASE


Currently, the Afar people in Ethiopia are facing disastrous, appalling and unprecedented dreadful famine catastrophe. The famine was not only caused by lack of rain, drought, climate change and effect of El Niño weather conditions as they claim but, it was a result of TPLF/EPRDF corruption, failure of strategies and policies, bad governance, human rights violations, unlawful land grabbing, forcible removal and eviction of Afar People from their traditional grazing land. They were driven away from the banks of Awash River which has been the lifeline of the Afar population that depend on it for survival since time immemorial to make place for the sugar plantations and large-scale agricultural projects owned by TPLF and foreign multinational corporations, companies and investors.

First, the Afar people saying that since 2012, they have been calling on the Federal and Regional Governments to find solution for the water shortages, environmental degradation, destruction of pastors and grazing resources, drying up of the Awash River problems that caused by damming of the Awash River by the regime, nevertheless their appeal and call fell on deaf ear.

Second it is a well-documented fact is that both the Ex-President and the current President of the Afar region, Ex- and current Federal Communication Affairs Office Minister have deliberately and blindly denied the existence of the famine in Ethiopia during 2013-2015.

Third, it is irrefutable fact is that TPLF/ ANDP or “ADE as it is known locally” purposely failed to recognise, acknowledge and to declare the famine on time. They even refused to call publically on the international Community for emergency humanitarian assistance to help the affected peoples in the country.

Additional fact is that, instead of helping the affected peoples by the famine, Federal Government Communication Affairs Office Minister Redwan Hussein blamed and accused the Afar pastoralists for the death of their livestock in order to cover his Government’s forcible removal of Afar pastoralists from their traditional grazing land on the Awash River banks to make away for TPLF, Foreign Multinational Corporations’ and Investors owned large scale Projects. The famine created by TPLF/EPRDF has already caused too many catastrophic problems for the Afar, such as food insecurity, water crisis, widespread malnutrition, health problem and unprecedented death of their livestock. As a result, the Afar have severely suffered.
In addition to the unprecedented famine that was worsened by the policies of the regime the TPLF has developed the following plans to systematically exterminate the Afar in Ethiopia:-

  • Unlawful land grabbing and enforced eviction from their land
  • Removing them from the Awash River banks forcibly
  • Transferring parts of Afar land to the Somali tribe called Issa to create endless conflict between them in coordination with Issa dominated regime of Djibouti for its interests.
  • Instigating conflicts between the Afar and their neighbouring peoples
  • Removing Afar from all mineralised areas of Afar land
  • Appointing uneducated, unskilled, inexperienced and corrupted individuals as Afar region officials to serve the interest of TPLF.
  • Creating tribalism, mistrust and division between the ruling mafia and the Afar society;
  • Controlling Afar region economic, political, social and cultural affairs by appointed Tigray Security Advisors or Counsellor, locally known as Ammakari

Any person who disagrees or rejects ANDP (QADE) TPLF (WAYANE) order is called anti peace element and sympathizer with ARDUF then; he/she is arrested and imprisoned arbitrarily. Today, the Afar region does not have a legitimate political authority accountable to the Afar. It is ruled by TPLF former fighters who are member of the Tigray People Liberation Front (TPLF). Their main duty, obligation and responsibility is only to serve their master not the Afar people, as they appointed by TPLF not by the Afar people, they are only accountable and answerable to the TPLF.
As a result of TPLF racially motivated discriminatory politics and policies the Peoples of Ethiopia in all regions are all facing increasing political oppression, economic marginalisation, and social exclusion, gross violation of human rights, horrible famine and internal displacement. The regime continues to unlawfully kill, systematically repress and arbitrarily arrest people in the regions of Oromia, Ogaden, Sidama, Amhara and Gambella in general and in the districts of Konso, Qimant, Humera, Tsegede and Wolkait in particular who fight for their basic human rights.

ARDUF condemns in the strongest possible terms the horrifying famine crimes of killings, displacement and forcible removal from their ancestral land committed by TPLF regime on the Afar people in particular; and against other peoples in Ethiopia in general.

ARDUF calls on all Ethiopian opposition forces, civil societies, human rights defenders and journalists to reject and denounce the politics of divide and rule by an iron fist and oppression of TPLF/EPRDF and support a democratic armed struggle to eliminate the fascist regime and to establish a genuine Democratic Federalism based on the rule of law in Ethiopia.

Long live the Victory of ARDUF & Ethiopian Peoples

Military Command Centre (MCC)
Information Desk of ARDUF
Afar Revolutionary Democratic Unity Front (ARDUF)


 

Ethiopia: Unconditionally Release the Sidama Political Prisoners April 18, 2016

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley, Sidama.
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Odaa OromooSidama Nation Flag

 

Unconditionally Release the Sidama Political Prisoners

 

SNLF Press Release, April 2016

The following Sidama scholars and businessmen have been kidnapped by the security forces of the TPLF led government of Ethiopia and are currently languishing in the most notorious prison of the country known as ‘Maikelawi’ in the country’s capital Finfinnee (Addis Ababa):

1) Solomon Naayu (A Business Person)
2) Desalegn Meessa (A Professor at Wolayita Sodo Univeristy)
3) Girma Dishe (A Busienss Person)
4) Shura Kachara (A Business Person)
5 Debebe Daaka (A Business person)

In stark violation of their human rights, some of them have been in detention since November 2015 while others have been incarcerated since early 2016 without any trial. They have been tortured repeatedly to extract confession on crimes they never committed. The reasons given by the Ethiopian security forces for their detention and torture are extremely bizarre. They range from visiting the Oromia region repeatedly during the Oromo protests to receiving telephone calls from their relatives in Diaspora and having some anti-government ideas in their minds.

The TPLF/EPRDF led government of Ethiopia continues to grossly abusing the human rights of the Sidama people and other citizens with impunity for two decades and a half in contempt to its international commitments and the constitution of the country drawn by the regime itself. The aforementioned Sidama people had never committed any crime. Their only crime is being the members of the Sidama society.

The Sidama people and the Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF) categorically condemns their unlawful detention and torture and demands their immediate and unconditional release.

The SNLF also calls on the international community, the United Nations, the African Union and all human rights organizations to put pressure on the TPLF led regime of Ethiopia to respect basic human and democratic rights of the citizens of the country. The SNLF also calls upon all subjugated nations’ and peoples’ opposition groups and peoples of Ethiopia to be unconditionally united to fight the regime collectively oppressing all with varying degrees.

May Justice and Liberty belong to all Mankind

The Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF)

April 2016

The Sidama Farmers Beaten and Arrested by TPLF’s Forces January 2, 2016

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Odaa Oromoo

The Sidama Farmers Beaten and Arrested by TPLF’s Forces

 

By Kukkissa, Sidama Reporter from Sidama capital, Hawassa.

Sidama land

The Sidama farmer whose land has been confiscated by government is resisting the plan staying for an over night on the tree behind his house with desperate measure to record his grievances (2015).

(Sidama National Regional State) — In the past 24 years of Ethiopian politics, TPLF’s savage regime has shown its state-terrorism and capability of committing crimes of unprecedented proportion against unarmed civilians. It has also shown its inadequacy in a number of ways including totally ignoring and breaking its constitution which is country’s supreme law although it always erroneously preaches it. The regime always claims that it is safeguarding the constitution even whilst killing unarmed civilians. Time again we sow TPLF’s regime blatantly violating the rights of citizens under the pretext of its defense. This claim remains an ongoing rhetoric even as it currently massacres Oromo civilians by imposing martial law in Oromia region.

Witnessing the ongoing massacre of hundreds of thousands of unarmed citizens in broad day light on yearly basis can’t be defending the rights of civilians or safeguarding of the constitution. Continually incarcerating hundreds of thousands of peaceful civilians and opposition figures who speak the truth isn’t defending constitution. Responding to all peaceful quests of the citizens with live bullets doesn’t constitute promoting justice. The unlawful displacement of millions of helpless and powerless farmers from their ancestral lands to allow TPLF’s officials to trade with their lands under obfuscating explanations by leaving legitimate owners and their families destitute can’t justify any person’s or government’s actions. Favoring single ethnic (minority) thus allowing them to own the lands of the entire country belonging to all 96 million Ethiopians isn’t about defending constitution. Terrorizing peaceful and unarmed citizens under the pretexts of defending constitution and peace and security can’t justify any person’s brutal actions under whatsoever explanation. Controlling of the entire economy, military and political aspect of the country by solely Tigray born politicians never justify the action of TPLF’s government. Promoting the supremacy of minority government to do whatever they wish on the other groups of peoples can’t be continually tolerated. Moreover, relocating TPLF’s own people (politicians and affiliates) from Tigray region in the land of Oromia, Sidama, Ogaden, Amhara by displacing them without the will of the peoples of those regions isn’t and can’t be sustainable and tolerated any longer.

There are ample evidence proving that this regime has neither respected its Paper Tiger constitution nor allowed the citizens to exercise them apart from brutally treating the citizens by its military and security apparatuses whenever they demand these rights to be respected. The citizens of the country from north to south, from west to east have been summarily executed, massacred and extra judiciary arrested for demanding their constitutionally guaranteed rights. As I have mentioned above, millions have been displaced from their lands without the necessary parameters in place to safeguard their livelihoods with ultimate aim of vacating their land for the regimes’ cadres so that they can trade with it for their personal gain in the name of investment. The continued massacre of the Oromo people and beating and imprisoning of the Sidama farmers as we speak is part of such regime’s ill-conceived and savage actions against fundamental and constitutionally guaranteed rights of citizens.

Although constitutionally unlawful, politically incorrect and morally wrong, TPLF’s leadership and loyal cadres’ excessive use of farmers’ land as their own personal asset by displacing millions has blatantly continued. TPLF’s officials and their surrogates increasingly became such reckless greedy bunches of criminals who have no sense of humanity, power of empathy and reasoning to continue with their unprecedented level of barbarism toward unarmed civilians under their false development’s defeating mantra. After exhausting all business and economic exploitation of the entire country, they have now resorted to confiscating the lands of Oromia, Sidama, Ogadenia, Amhara and others regional peoples.

TPLF’s army and political leadership who have arrived to Finfinnee (Addis Ababa) 24 years ago – each of them with single fire arm and famous slippers locally known as ‘Barabasso’ and pediculosis infested unhygienic Afro hair have already looted the Oromo, the Sidama, Amhara, Ogadenia, Benshalgul, and the entire south Ethiopia resources to accumulate multimillion; to build multi-story buildings in various cities and towns of the country, exclusively rule over the entire country with iron feast, evade taxi to keep multi million dollars in foreign countries and further create hundreds of business companies under various pretexts. As we speak, they are hell bent to continue with their unwarranted barbarism, lies and deceits whist looting and subjugating their subjects.

Moreover, evidences show that TPLF’s regime has also sophisticated its dehumanizing and depersonalizing techniques to a number of ways including brutally torturing, sodomizing male prisoners and gang-raping female opposition prisoners. In their infamous prison known as ‘Ma’ikelawi’ literally meaning the central; tens of thousands of political, economic and human rights activists are incarcerated where they are subjected to such horrendous dehumanizing and depersonalizing treatments in the name of defending the said lifeless constitution. The Sidama’s famous business person known as ‘Solomon Nayu’ has been kidnapped from his home on the 27th of November 2015 and taken to the said notorious prison where his family and the Sidama community are denied visit and concerned for his life.

Meanwhile, TPLF’s regime policy towards the Sidama nation has brutal and continued as it has been for the past 24 years. Tens of thousands of Sidama farmers have been displaced from their ancestral lands of Hawassa adjacent villages since this regime has assumed power. The Sidama farmers and civilians as well as opposition politicians who have resisted to such polices have been always responded with imprisonments, torture and live bullets. For instance, the Loqqee massacre of Sidama’s 69 civilians on May 24, 2002 is part of such TPLF’s heinously masterminded action and barbarous policy toward the Sidama nation as is to the Oromo, Ogadenia, Gambella, Amhara and the other peoples of the country.

More shockingly, TPLF’s regime has planned to exponentially expand Hawassa city up to Yirgalem (over 44 km) from Hawssa. In its second phase, TPLF’s regime has already displaced at least 200,000 Sidama farmers from three Hawassa adjacent districts where it has already began trading with the Sidama’s ancestral lands leaving the Sidama farmers destitute. The Sidama farmers those who question TPLF’s unlawful actions are always brutally beaten in front of their wives, children and even in front of their in-laws (children’s wives and husbands).

Since the 23rd of December 2015, the newly assigned Hawassa mayor renegade known as Tewodros Gebiba (although his name if Tewodros Gebeyehu, from one of Sidama born non-Sidama Ethiopians) has been terrorizing Sidama farmers at Sidama’s Shallo farmer’s association about 12-15km from Hawassa. He has called for the Sidama farmers meeting in this particular association where he’s asked them to unconditionally leave their lands for government’s development projects. When the Sidama farmers question what this is meant to their families and questioned why the government displaces them without any compensation and pre-arranged plans, he’s boldly reminded them about the Sidama’s Loqqee massacre of May 24, 2002 and warned them that, if they resist the plan of the government, similar fate might be awaiting them. Subsequently, the Sidama farmers rose up against him when he has immediately ordered for re-enforcement of two military vehicles full of security personnel who have been waiting for such deployment in Hawassa. Tewodros Gebeyehu has been also entrusted the power of commanding Hawassa’s city security forces exclusively assigned by the federal government to terrorize Sidama people in addition to his puppet mayoral role. He has been given both roles simply because TPLF’s authorities and fake PM Hailemariam Desalegne believed that this man is an honest anti-Sidama tool, good for taking their orders to implement it in Sidama land without slightest hesitation and deviation.

Sidama business places burned down by regime’s secret forces to vacate room for TPLF’s businesses in Hawassa.

Sidama business places burned down by regime's secret forces to vacate room for TPLF's businesses in Hawassa.

Sidama business places burned down by regime’s secret forces to vacate room for TPLF’s businesses in Hawassa.

In so doing, Tewodros Gebeyehu (fake Gebiba) has ordered the security and federal police personnel to beat and torture hundreds of Sidama’s Shallo farmers. After satisfying their sadistic interests of beating and torturing of unarmed Sidama farmers, they brought unknown number of them to Hawassa police station where they stay to date. These farmers are in addition to those who have been beaten and tortured in Datto village for similar reason where 42 Sidama farmers have been finally arrested about 5 weeks ago.

The Sidama nation must be united and rise up against the regime brutalizing them whilst systematically impoverishing the nation under the pretext of fake development. There can’t be any development by uprooting farmers from their livelihoods to make them and their families utter destitute. The Sidama nation must be prepared and take up all possible challenges to pay the necessary sacrifices for their rights in particular with their Oromo cousins. The Sidama’s University students must work with their Oromo cousins’ day and night until this regime is removed from power to allow the rules of law to be fully exercised and the respect of human dignity and democratic rights are fully achieved.

The Sidama nation must stand shoulder to shoulder with the Oromo to fight this brutal regime with all possible means. Never keep silent. Equally, Amhara, Ogadenia, Afar, Gambellla, Benshangul, Wolyta, Gedeo, Hadya, Guragie, Kambata, Kafa Shaka and the rest of Ethiopians, must show their unconditional support to the Oromo nation with action not with lip services. It is a time for all of us to be united to wage effective war against TPLF’s barbaric and heinous regime who rejoices by the tortures of unarmed and powerless citizens.

Silence while something so important to humanity is being compromised is equivalent to dead walking. ‘Life without Purpose and Reason is not worth living’ (Socrates 390 BC).

By Kukkissa, the Sidama reporter from Sidama capital Hawassa.

December 31st 2015

Ethiopia: Habasha myth and peoples’ liberation | Hooda Habashaa fi bilisummaa Ummataa January 10, 2015

Posted by OromianEconomist in Africa, Ethiopia's Colonizing Structure and the Development Problems of People of Oromia, Afar, Ogaden, Sidama, Southern Ethiopia and the Omo Valley.
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Habasha myth and peoples’ liberation | Hooda Habashaa fi bilisummaa Ummataa

By Ibsaa Guutamaa | January 9, 2015

http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/habasha-myth-and-peoples-liberation-hooda-habashaa-fi-bilisummaa-ummataa/

Ibsaa_Guutama In olden times it is customary for rulers to claim mystic origins different from their people. Such origins have some divine trait to justify limitless power for the man at the head, the king. That was how the Solomonic dynast of Abyssinia was told to have been created by a book composed in Egypt, called “Kibira Nagast”. Bara duri moototi madda hooda ummata saaniirraa adda tahe ofii kennu turan. Maddoti akkasii moototaaf aangoo hin dangahamne akka kennuuf qaccee gubbaan hidhata qabutu jira. Akka sanatt hundee mootummaa Habashaa Solomonawaa akka tahe kan himu moor “Kibira Nagast” jedhamuu Masaritt akka uumame kan himamu. Moor kun moototi Habashaa hundeen saanii Mooticha Israa’el Solomoon irraa akka bu’e hima.
It claims for Habasha kings an origin that traces to King Solomon of Israel. A son was born from out of wedlock romance between the king and the Queen of Sheba when she came to visit him from somewhere in the South as told. Queen of Sheba is known only through religious books of the Middle East and there is no history book that mentions her or her exact country. That is why she is claimed by Arabs and African alike. Even then her committing adultery with King Solomon and having a son was not mentioned in the religious books. That is why many believe that Minilik I was a creation of the Coptic Church to have permanent influence on Habashaa Kings and never existed as presented. His name started to appear in the said document, Kibra Nagast, for the first time. Thus everything surrounding him and his mother is myth told over and over by generations of Habashaa clerics known as daftaraa.The myth had served the Habashaa ruling clique to rule over their people with fear of the heavenly and iron fist. The people are never citizens with full rights over their individual life and national affairs. They were subjects that pay tributes and serve the rulers without question. The clerics play great role in cramming down the myth and the possible supernatural retribution if doubted into the minds of the masses making them believe that it would be sin to disobey the rulers, in particular the king. In the last four centuries Habashaa power was never transferred peacefully. Kings were overthrown by individuals that declare themselves kings. Except for those daredevils there were rare mass movements to overthrow the kings for they are under the fear of divine retribution. Even movement like that in Goojjam in 1960s targeted the Governor General Tsahayuu Inqusillaasee’s harsh rule not the Emperor.The kings were presented as demigod throughout their history until the over throw of Emperor Haile Sillaasee. With the last emperor a saturation point was reached where people started doubting the sinfulness of rebellion against injustice. In earlier times the chief priest from Alexandria can condemn the rebellion or untie the people from allegiance to the king. That was what the church did to Iyyaasuu; it untied the people from allegiance to him. To over throw the last emperor no priest interference was required because the chief priest was also under threat for it was not individual rebellion but mass revolution that came to change the setup of the monarchical rule. That be as it may the reverence for those holding power still persists among the Habashaa masses. It is a bone deep ethos that does not easily get erased.Through the years prior to that many changes have taken place. Many independent nations were annexed to Habashaa kingdom by force. Except for the land holding system, all autocratic vices of governance were transplanted to the colonies. The world’s technology and needs have started to grow in leaps and bounds. Africa was divided among alien colonizers. The world had carried out two world wars. These have prompted the demand for liberation and freedom by oppressed and colonized peoples of the world. But still they are the sly elites that dominate the political fields in Habashaa land. Power is yet far off from the people. It would have been advantageous for all oppressed peoples of the empire had the Habasha people asserted their right to be governed by those they truly elect. However waiting until they do that or fighting for them to achieve democratic rule cannot be a precondition for others to be free. To negotiate with a democratic state about freedom would have been easier than dealing with bunches of undemocratic dictators. For development, regional understanding and proper governance of the Horn of Africa the existence of democratic states can be the only warranty.

Unable to cop up with the new situation the emperor has to give way. Though the major role for the change was played by the colonies, power did not go to them for they were not organized. The occupation army took over and filled offices with new class. Some members of the old ruling class took individual actions opposing the change. But they were easily crushed because the oppressed sided with the junta. The remaining landed gentry were easily cajoled to get in line and pledge allegiance to the new order. The new rulers asserted that the source of power is not Devine but the people. But “One Ethiopia or Death” slogan was adopted assuring Darg’s loyalty to the empire state reassuring the Habasha people. Thus at least formally the Solomonic legend was mostly demystified. The new regime and its left leaning cohorts echoed after Mao Zedong that “Political power grows out of the barrel of a gun” making their heritage more clear. They are going to impose their rule with power of the gun alone unlike the ancient Nafxanyaa that used the gun plus the Cross. The same principle is adhered to down to the present day.

The Darg was forced out of power in the same way it came, by the power of the gun. For those that replaced them just like their predecessors, negotiation for the dissolution and sanctity of the empire was off the table. For the colonies nothing short of its destruction could answer their question. But a make believe policy that recognize peoples’ rights was put into a charter. The traditional power sharing practice between the two major Habashaa groups, Amaaraa and Tigrawayi was not respected. Tigray went alone to exploit the colonies for benefit of individual rulers and fringe benefit of their region. The causes that led to over throw of the different Habashaa regimes are not yet addressed. Material deprivation of the masses in the mother country is still continuing except for the especial advantage Tigray got at the expense of others. Amaaraa elites have turned blind eye to their people’s plight while focusing on how to snatch away Oromiyaa from their cousins.

As for the colonies their resources are busy building infrastructure of Tigray. Roads, electric power, health facilities, defense force etc are mushrooming. Education facilities that produce future leaders for the empire with exclusive curriculum are said to be flourishing in Tigray alone. For the colonies nothing significant was done. Even plans for infrastructure development started by the emperor are not completed. The previous regimes, including the Italians built roads to the colonies so that as much resources and services as possible are sifted out. From that Oromiyaa had some trickled benefits though incomparable to what colonial masters gained from it. The present ones added nothing to it to deny the indigenous smooth access to information and market. As long as they have power over the market they can force low prices on products and higher communication and transport cost locally. That gives them monopoly over movement of wealth of the colonies. The policy that allowed for land grabbing has brought in voracious groups that may side with Wayyaanee in defense of their investment, there by prolonging the subjugation of Oromiyaa and its neighbors with possible fast extinction of some minorities already on the verge.

Habashaa rulers have managed their own people with unending terror. The conquest of new land might have relieved the age old internal tension. Able bodied men were given the opportunity to share in the colonial spoils. They were infatuated by their new gains, power, land, hunting grounds, vegetation, water, gold and other natural resources and above all free labor. The rulers and their followers were guided by intuition not knowledge. They took for granted the new land and never went back to alleviate the agony of those who are still suffering under brutal rule of petty chiefs they left behind. They feed the people only with false hopes and grandeur and fame they brought for them internationally. Those are the Nafxanyaa parasites that had been reaping without sawing for over a century. It never clicks their minds that a time will come that they will be demanded to hand over to the owners all their loots. When that time arrives they know they have nowhere to go and no one to turn to. Whatever they had looted will return to the legitimate owners from wherever they were stashed. This they know and it is its nightmare that is driving them crazy terrorists in order to live a day more.

Despite the myth’s falling apart conspirators are trying to patch them together. They mix up history of ancient Kush (Nuubiyaa) cited by Greek historians and the religious books of the Middle East, with that of recent Abyssinia to confuse world public opinion. Still Ethiopia’s colonial nature is being suppressed by dishonest writers, politicians and diplomats. They tell of Ethiopia maintaining her independence untouched by “The Scramble for Africa”. But they do not tell of which Ethiopia they are talking. If they are talking of Abyssinia, that may be true. Abyssinia had participated in the Scramble for Africa. It is only racist mind that denies this. Free countries like Afar, Ogaadeeniyaa, Wala’ita, Sidaamaa, Kaficho, Oromiyaa and all the counties south of Habashaa land were colonized then with support of other colonizer buddies. Now is the time to write the true history of the region of which Habashaa is one among the many. This truth must be a part of freedom fighters manual. One has to know the driving force behind the enemy that makes it selflessly greedy and brutal. Now Ethiopian empire has become good only for history books for it cannot keep one people subservient to another anymore.

Descendants of the first “Nafxanyaa” in Oromiyaa were the most privileged members of the society distinctly different from the indigenous people around them. They were owners of land and most of the wealth it produced. That land based economic wealth came to an end with land proclamation of 1975. But their umbilical cord with the empire state was not totally severed. Most were still trusted more than the oppressed for which the revolution claimed to come. But still they were hard hit by the revolution in general terms. That be as it may, the colonial state cannot escape the responsibility by changing its name and ideology, not descendents of the first Nafxanyaa. It is the one that has to apologize and redressed all harms done. As for the descendants no one can deny them being an Oromiyaan if they desire so. But if they are still the bragging types by the broken bones and spilt blood of their forebears in the process of colonization it could be considered “rubbing salt on a wound”. But for those that stand for justice and equality there is nothing to fear from independent free Oromiyaa. Because they were born in Oromiyaa for most of them there is no other country to claim or better relations they could depend on. To support free Oromiyaa or continuation of the empire is their individual choice.

The problem in which descendant of the first Nafxanyaa find themselves in, needs to be addressed by liberation activists. Given from what they were told at bed side story or as indoctrination at schools, any change in the status quo can be freighting for they were not told about Oromo accommodativeness at the same time. Throughout their lives they had been seeing Oromo the dehumanized and timid not the real one. The real one is not vengeful but brave and passionate; to make peace is the arena of the brave and true offspring of the Gadaa fathers.

It must be understood that the sacrifices the oppressed made are not to oppress others in turn. It is to bring peace, freedom and happiness for all Oromiyaans irrespective of ethnicity or past records. Descendants of the first Nafxanyaa are being hammered from left and right by false history and gruesome consequences if the colonies were freed. That is daily reinforced by continuous propaganda of those that are not personally affected but have something to gain from chaos that may ensue. The struggle for liberation is not based on ethnicity. It is the demand for, liberation from alien domination, justice, freedom and equality. The Nafxanyaa descendant may be answerable for their own folly like all Oromiyaans not for their forefathers. As for ethnicity of the Nafxanyaa for many of them it is all a myth that their forefathers were made to accept of being Amaaraa, whether they were recruited from Abyssinia or Oromiyaa. Purposely they have made Amaaraa synonymous with Orthodox Christianity to which most gun wielders are proselytized, to keep Oromo Nafxanyaa apart from the Waaqeffataa and Muslim indigenous. It is up to them to verify if racism has anything to do with the Oromo question and even if they were real Habashaa before they are thrown to fright by made up ethnic cleansing scarecrow.

Otherwise, to join a group that denies Oromoo having land in Africa would be, denying one’s own identity or self-hatred. It will also be denying Minilik’s claim that is on record of his being “Emperor of Abyssinia and the Oromo countries”. The first Nafxanyaa had destroyed more than half the population, their sovereignty, culture, language, national identity and tradition mercilessly. That is all remembered for its historic value not to affect generations that are not responsible. But anyone that continues with that animosity and contempt for the colonial peoples even under the present situation cannot escape being responsible for condoning criminal actions.

There cannot be peace, stability and development in the region without the rule of law, democracy and freedom. The colonizer has nothing to gain from peace and stability of the region. Rule of law, democracy and freedom for all does not give it exclusive access to resources. Therefore it will not accept the right of nations to national self-determination that includes independence of the colonies which is a democratic right. In addition losing authority for those that abused human rights while in power makes them vulnerable to the wrath of justice. For these reasons it is highly unlikely for it to give up power willingly. Therefore for activists to waver at every turn is no solution, only firm stand could lead to victory. Peoples’ right is not something that one gives to another but is a birth right recognized by Assembly of nations. Today political forces of Oromiyaa are not well organized to enforce their nation’s rights but spontaneous people’s movements for liberation are fast rolling. Whether liberal Oromo or fundamentalist Habasha like it or not, the struggle for independence will never stop. OLF can stand only for independence as its program dictates and for nothing short of that as long as it remains OLF.

The following is UN resolution 3070 of 30, November 1973 for everyone to know:

The General Assembly ∙∙∙

1. Reaffirms the inalienable right of all people under colonial and foreign domination and alien subjugation to self-determination, freedom and independence in accordance with General Assembly resolutions 1514 (XV) of 14 December 1960, 2649 (XXV) of 30 November 1970 and 2787 (XXVI) of 6 December 1971;

2. Also reaffirms the legitimacy of the peoples’ struggle for liberation from colonial and foreign domination and alien subjugation by all available means, including armed struggle;

3. Calls upon all States, in conformity with the Charter of the United Nations and with relevant resolutions of the United Nations, to recognize the right of all peoples to self-determination and independence and to offer moral, material and any other assistance to all peoples struggling for the full exercise of their inalienable right to self-determination and independence;

Frightening the masses with the divine power of kings has already eclipsed. Then all the dirty policies of the kings were covered up under the saying “Kings make no mistake” and they were presented as fountains of justice with no flaws. Now with that myth broken leaders of the empire stand naked and their naked force exposed. They cannot distance themselves from implementation of their oppressive inhuman policies. Rule of law had never been a concern of Habasha rulers though there were traditional redress mechanisms in the ancient ones. The present ones have full control over all mechanism and it is only them that are judges for their actions. Therefore to save the Habasha from abuse of power, peoples of the colonies from dehumanization and extermination they have to go. To be ruled by rude gangsters is sin. Wayyaanee is on its way out soon forced by its own mistakes and corruption. But the question Oromo liberators have to answer is what next?

The cry of “terrorism” for Wayyaanee is one of the methods to get aid and attention from western countries in particular USA. But how long should the tax payer’s money prop a corrupt unsustainable dying system? The truth is there is no terrorism in Ethiopia except for the incumbent government itself. It is to hide its true terrorist nature and win appreciation when it kills and imprisons so many people for being terrorists. Actually they were not terrorists but Oromo; it is terrorizing them not to dare ask for justice. Under the pretext of fighting terrorism they fulfill their objective of keeping the Oromo nation under subjugation with the material and moral support they get. The vanguard political organization Oromo have, the OLF is branded terrorist to smear any dissenting Oromo voice as members of OLF and therefore “terrorist”!

Reports of human right organization had exposed the Ethiopian government of abusing its people in particular the Oromo. Oromo are law abiding peace loving people with democratic tradition. To which ever religion they might belong so far no extremism is observed among the Oromo. All believers understand their place and role within the Oromo national political setting. There Gadaa background seems never forgotten when it comes to maintain peace and conciliation (Nagaa and Araaraa). They were good fighters and good peace makers prior to all indoctrinations. Still they have the stamina to fight and to make peace but for freedom and independence of their country, Oromiyaa, not for “clash of civilization”. Unlike the Habashaa their civilization was known for accommodativeness. No religion or religious sect had ever been considered as second class citizen in Oromiyaa while religious segregation is obvious in Abyssinia from time immemorial as opposed to what they lecture to the world.

That has to be understood as not to be swayed by Wayyaanee smear campaign. The Oromo are victims of Wayyaanee terror not vis-versa. Oromiyaa is the country of the brave. The brave believe in fair play at any time. No violence should be used against the unarmed and there is no terrorizing the not aware innocent civilian. That is the skill Wayyaanee is trained for. That is what it is carrying out on the Oromo and crying of Oromo being “terrorists”. Oromo can be called terrorist only if resisting alien subjugation can be termed so. Be that what it may the Oromo will continue fighting with the occupation army of aliens until their right for national self-determination up to and including independence is realized.

Honor and glory for the fallen heroines and heroes; liberty equality and freedom for the living and nagaa and araaraa for the Ayyaanaa of our fore parents!

Ibsaa Guutama
December 2014

Fuudhaa alatt meshebbelaan Mootichaa fi Mootittii Saabaa irraa yeroo iseen biyya tahe gara kibbaatii isa daawwachuu dhufte akka ilmi dhalate dubbata. Mootittiin Saabaa moorota dhugeeffannoo Baha Gidduu malee moor seenaa biraan dhahuu, yookaan biyyisee bakka kam akka tahe kan agarsiisu hin jiru. Kanaafi kan Afrikaa fi Arabiyaanis keenya kan jedhaniin. Moorota dhugeeffannoo keessatt Mooticha Solomoon waliin sagaggaluu see haatahu ilma godhachuun see hin himamne. Kanaaf Minilik I galmistaana Kopti fedha mootummaa Habashaarratt dhiibbaa dhaabbataa gochuuf kan uume malee akka himameti kan hin jirre jedhanii hedduun amanuu. Maqaan saa jalqabaaf mooricha “Kibira Nagast” jedhame irratt qofa kan mullate. Egaa want naannaa saa fi naannaa haadha sa jiru hundi hooda irra deddeebi’amee dhaloota daftaroota Habashaan himamee dha.Hoodichi garee bulchituu Habashaa, soda gubbaa fi abootee sibiilan akka mo’an tajaajila bahe. Ummatichi nambiyyoota lubbuu ofii fi dantaa sabichaa irratt gonka mirga guutuu qaban hin turre. Gabbaarii gibiraa baaftuu fi bulchoota gaaffii malee tajaajiltu turan jechuu dha. Qeesoti, hoodichaa fi balaa yoo ciicatan gubbaa itt dhufuu dandahu sammuutt gad hudumuun yoo bulchoota,keessaayyuu mootichaa sarmuu didan cubbuu akka tahu sodachisaa turanii. Jaarra arfan darban keessa angoon mootii Habashaa nagaan tokko irraa kan biraatt darbee hin beeku. Moototi namoota mootii of godhaniin finqilchamu turan. Sodaa haaloo bahannaa gubbaa dhufuun,abba tokkoota xaranga’oo homaa hin sodaanneen malee sochiin ummataa bulchoota irratt godhaman hamma hin jirre turan. Sochooti 1960moota keessa Goojjam ture illee hammina Bulchaa Muumicha TSahaayuu Inqusillaasee irratt kan xiyyeeffate malee Mootii Moototaa hin laalu ture.Moottoti seenaa saanii hundaa kaasee hanga finqilchamuu Hayila Sillaaseett akka cittuuwaaq tahanitt ilaalamu turani dhumaa want halle morma nama gahuun ummattooti daba irratt finciluun cubbuu tahuu ciicachuutt kahan. Dur Qeesii muummichi Alaksandariyaa fincila sooka’uu yk ummata mootii amanamuu irraa hiikuu dandahu turani. Sana ture galmistanni kan Iyyaasuutt tolche; ummata amanama isaaf qabanirraa hiikeen. Mooticha isa dhumaa finqilchuuf gidduu seenuu qeesii hin barbaachifne ture; diddaa abba tokkee utuu hin tahin warraaqsa waan tureef qeesichi muummichuu dorsifamaa ture. Sunis tahee ulfinni ummati Habashaa kanneen aangoo irra jiranii qabu ammalee cichee jira. Hooda hamma lafeett seene waan taheef salphaatt hin haqamu.Waggooti sanaan dura geedarama hedduutu tahe. Saboota ofiin buloo hedduutu humnaan mootummaa Habashaatt dabalame. Sirna qabiyyee lafaa malee hamaan mootumma abbaa hirrumaa Habashaa akka jiruti kolonota irrati habaqalame. Tekinooloojii fi fedhi addunyaa dachaan guddachuu eegalan. Afrikaan koloneeffatoo halagaa gidduutt qircamte. Addunyaan lola waraan addunyaa lama godhe. Sanneen cunqurfamootii fi koloneefatamtooti addunyaa bilisummaa akka gaafatan jajjabeese. Haatahu malee ammayyuu dirree malbulchaa keessatt olantummaa abshaalota gurguddoo Habashaatu muldhata ture. Angoon ummata irraa ammallee fagoo jirtii. Utuu ummati Habashaa kan isaan dhugaan filatan qofa mallee eenyuu nun bulchu jedhanii ummatoota cunqurfamoota adduyaaf anjaa qaba ture. Haa tahu malee hamma isaan sana gochuu dandahanitt yk bulcha demokratawaa argachuuf lolatanitt eeguun jarri kaan bilisoomuuf hala duree tahuu hin dandahu. Finnaa demokratawe waliin waa’ee birmadummaa dhoofsisuun tuuta abbaa hirrootaa waliin gochuu irra salphata ture. Gaanfa Aftikaaf finnooti demokratawan jiraachuun misoomaa, walqayyabannoo godinaa fi bulcha akkaaf iggitii taha ture

Haala haaraan wal fudhachuu dadhabuun mootichi bakka gad dhiisuutu irra ture. Yoomallee jijjiirama taheef qooda guddaa kan gumaachan kolonoota tahan waan hin ijaaramneef aangoon isaanitt hin dabarre. Waraana biyya qabatee jirutu fudhatee gita haaraa itt naqee. Miseensoti gita dullachaa tokko tokko jijjiiramichaan mormuu yaalanii turani. Cunqurfamtooti loltuu waliin waan dhaabbataniif salphaatt macalaqfamuu dandahan. Abbaan lafaa hafan, salphaatti toora galfamanii akka sirna haaraaf kakuu seenan tolfaman. Bulchooti haaraan maddi aangoo gubbaa utuu hin tahin ummata jedhan. Garuu dhaadannoo haaraa “Itophiyaa tokko yk du’a” jedhu guddifachuun Dargiin empayeriif amanamaa akka tahe ummata Habashaaf mirkaneesse. Akkasitt hoodummaan durdurii Solomonawaa hanga tokko raawwate. Mootummaa haaraaf jala kaattuun saa bitaatt duufaa turan dhaalmaa saanii xaliila gochuun Maa’oo Zedongiin qiliwwisanii “Angoon malbulchaa afaan qawwee keessaa olbaha” jedhaa turan. Kan nafxanyaan durii qawwee fi qaxaamurroott dhimma bahe isaan kun afaan qawwee qofaan fedha saanii nama irratt fe’uuf deemu jechuu dha. Akeekuma kanatu hanga harraatt daddarbuun dhimma itt bahamaa jira.

Dargiin akkuma ofii dhufett afaan qawween dhiibamee aangoo irraa ari’ame. Kan bakka isaa bu’aniif akkuma angafa saanii digammii fi ulfummaan empayeraa kan hin dhoofisisamne jedhani. Kolonootaaf diigama saa gaditt gaaffii saaniif deebii tahuu kan dandahu hin jiru. Garuu imaammati fakkeessaa kan mirga ummataa beeku chartara keessa galfamee ture. Angoo hirmachuun durboota lamaan Amaaraa fi Tigraawaayi giduu dudhaan ture hin ulfeeffamne. Tigrayi bu’aa abba tokkootaa fi harcaatuu ummatichaaf argamuu dandahuuf samichatt kophaa bobbahe. Kaasaan mootota Habashaa finqlaachisaa ture ammayyuu deebii hin arganne. Dhabiisi waatattaa ummaticha biyya haadha, anjaa addaa Tigray dhabiisa jara kaaniin argateef malee ammayyuu itt fufa jiraa. Oromoo akkamiti durbii keenya irraa buufannaa irratt xiyyeefachuun gurguddoon Habashaa rakkina saba saaniitt ija duruufata jiru.

Waan kolonota ilaalu irratti qabeenyi saanii Tigraayiif jalcaasa akka commee margaa jiran, karaa, humna elektika, dhaabota fayyaa,humna ittisaa kkf ijaaruutt tattaafataa jira. Dhaaboti barumsaa hogganoota empayeraa egeree homishuuf adddatt kurfibarumsaa Tigray qofaaf dagaagaa jira jedhu. Kolonootaaf hagas waanti hojjetame hin jiru. Karoorri misa jalcaasaa nugusichaan diriire illee hin xumuramne. Moototi darban Xaliyanii dabalatee qabeenya fi tajaajila baafachuuf karaa ni ijaaru turanii. Sana keessaa hamma gahaa hin argatin malee Oromiyaan coccobduu hin dhabdu turte. Jarri si’anaa abbaan biyyaa iyyaatii fi gabaatt saaqaa salphaa akka hin arganneef homaa itt hin daballee. Hanga gabaa irratt dhuunfaa qabanitt gatiin hoomishaa akka cabu fi gatiin geejjibaa fi quunnamtii naannaa akka olkahu dirqisiisuu dandahu. Sun sochii qabeenyaa kolonotaa irratt humna dhuunfaa kennafi. Imaammati saamicha lafaa murnoota gomgomaa tahan horii lafarra oolchan eeggachuuf gara Wayyaanee goranii gadi qaba Oromiyaa fi olloota see dheeresuu ni gargaaru taha. Sunis sabooti bubbucuun tokko tokko kan durumaayyuu fittee irra jiran akka lafarra haqaman gochuu dandaha.

Moototi Habashaa goolii hin daangaa hin qabnneen ummata saanii gurmeessaa turan. biyyoota haaraa argachuun bokoka waggootiif keessaa turan hanga tokko afuura fudhachiisaniiru taha. Kan dandeettii qaamaa qaban saamicha koloneeffannaa keessatt akka qooda fudhatan carraan kennameefii ture. Bu’aa haaraa itt bahaniin, aangoo, lafa, dirree balla adamoo, bosona, bishaan, warqee fi qabeenya uumaa biraa fi hunda caalaa humna namaa tolaan basha’anii turan. Bulchootii fi jaleewwan saanii coraamaan masakamu malee beekumsa hin qaban turan. Lafi haaraan kan saanii tahee akka hafutt fudhatan malee deebi’anii firoota saanii ammayyuu “shuumata” xixxinnoo hacuucuucuunii dandahan harkatt dhiisanii bahan deebi’anii gadadoo saanii salphisuu hin yaadne. Abdii fi guddina sobaa addunyaa irratt argamsiisaniif laachuufii malee wanti dabalaniif hagas mara miti. Jarri sun Nafxanyaa digaloota jaarraa tookkoo oliif utuu hin facaasiin galfataa bahanii. Waanti saamichaan gurratan bar tokko abbaatt deebisuu akka dirqamuu dandahan takkaa sammuuti dhufee hin beeku. Gaafas bakka dhaqanii fi nammi itt dheessan akka hin jire beekuu. Kan saaman hundi bakka kuufatanii abbaa seerawaatt deebi’aa. Kana waan beekaniif yaaciin saa guyyaa tokko buluf gooltuu maraatuu tahuutt isaan oofaa jira.

Hoodicha gargar faca’aa jiru sadooti walitt suphuuf yaala jiru. Seenaa Kuush (Nubiyaa) durii Girikootaa fi moorota amantee Baha Gidduun dhahamee fi kan Habashaa dhiheenyaa walitt makuun ilaalcha addunyaa afanfajjeessuu barbaadu. Ammallee uumaan kolonummaa Itophiyaa innich dhugaan barreesota hin amanamne, malbulcheessoo fi malbeekotaan ukkaanfamaa jira. Itophiyaa akka waan “Hirmannaa Afrikaan” hin tuqamnee fi walabummaa see eegdee jiraatett himu. Garuu kan Itophiyaa kami akka jedhaa jiran hin himani. Yoo waa’ee Habashaa dubbatu tahe dhugaa tahuu dandaha. Habashaan “Hirmannaa Afriikaa” keessati qooda fudhatteetii. Kan kana haalu sammuu sanyeesituu qofa. Biyyooti bilisi Afar, Ogaadeeniyaa, Wala’ita, Sidaamaa, Kaficho, Oromiyaa fi biyyooti kibba biyya Habashaa jiran hundi gargaarsa miiltolee see koloneeffatoo biraatiin koloneeffatee turte. Yeroon seenaa godinichaa isa dhugaa kan Habashaas dabalatu barreessan ammaa. Dhugaan kun qaama qabattee harka duultu bilisummaa tahuu barbaachisa. Nammuu humna duubaa diinni hammma of wallaaldhalee donna fi bineensa tahuutt oofaa jiru baruu qaba. Amma empayerri Itophiyaa, ummata tokko kan biraaf jalee godhee tursuu waan hin dandeenyeef, kan inni tolu moor seenaa qofaafii.

Horeen Nafxanyaa jalqabaa Oromiyaa keessa jiran, miseensota hawaasichaa keessaa kan bashaan jiraachuu saaniin abbaa biyyaan irraa adda tahanii mullatan turanii. Lafaa fi waan inni baasu irratt abbaa turan. Qabeenyi, lafa irratt hundaawe sun labsa lafaa 1975n raawwate. Garuu hiddi handhuura saanii guutummaati Empayera irraa hin citne ture. Caalaan saanii cunqurfamoota labsichi dhufeef jedhaman caalaa amanamummaa qabu turan. Waliigalatt garuu warraaqsichaan hedduu rukutaman. Sun akka sana tahus finnaan kolonummaa maqaa fi ilaalcha jijjiirradhe jedhus balleessaa darbett kan gaafatamu isa malee horee Nafxanyaa kana miti. Badii tahe hundaaf aagii tufsiifatee kan dabe qajeelchuuf abbaawummaa isatu qaba. Horee Nafxanyaa yoo ni fedhu tahe Oromiyoo akka tahan nammi isaan haalu hin jiru. Garuu yoo isaan ammayyuu “kan abbooliin keenya dhiga itt lolaasanii, lafee saanii itt caccabsan” jedhanii dhaadatan tahe “madaa irratt soogidda dibuu” isa jedhan taha. Jara walqixxummaa fi qajeeltuuf dhaabbataniif garuu Oromiyaa walabaa fi bilisa irraa wanti sodaatan hin jiru. Oromiyaa keessatt waan dhalataniif hedduun saanii biyya biraa fi hariiroo wayyaa irratt hirkatan hin qabani. Oromiyaa walaba deggeruu haa tahu akka empayerri itt fufu, filachuun mirga saaaniiti. Yeroo rafan waan itt himamaa guddatanii fi waabariitt kan sammuu dhiqaman yoo laalamu halli jiru jijjiiramuun, walfaana akka Oromoon nama hin ciigaane waan itt hin himamneef sodaachisaa tahu dandaha. Jireenya saanii guutuu Oromoo namummaa baafame fi birdhataa malee isa dhugaa hin agarre. Inni dhugaa haaloof kan sardamu mitii, garuu jannaa fi garalaafessa; nagaa buusuun qooda jannaa fi ijoollee warra abbaa gadaati.

Kan qayyabatamuu qabu wareegammi cunqurfamooti godhan kan biraa darbanii cunqursuuf akka hin taane. Oromiyoo hundaaf, utuu lammii fi gocha darban hin laalin, nagaa, birmadummaa fi gammachuu argamsiisuufii. Horeen Nafxanyaa eegalaa wanti bitaa fi mirgaa itt afuufamaa jiru seenaa sobaa fi yoo kolonoti bilisa bahan waan hamaa irra gahuu dandahani. Kun holola kanneen dubbiin suduudaan hin tuqnee burjaajiin yoo dhalate keessaa waa arganaa lata jedhaniin jajjabaatee oofamaa jira. Qabsoon bilisummaa lammummaa irratt kan hundaawe utuu hin tahin gaaffii gadi qabaa halagaa jalaa bilisoomuu , qajeeltuu, birmadummaa fi walqixxummaati. Horeen Nafxanyaa akkuma Oromiyoo hundaa balleessaa ofiif malee kan abboolii saaniif hin gaafatamani. Waan lammumaa horee Nafxanyaa jalqabaa ilaalu irratt caalaa saaniif hooda abbooliin saanii Gondorii haa tahu Oromiyaa madaqfamanis Amaraa akka tahan fudhachiifamanii. Itt yaadamee Amaaraa fi Kiristinnaan Ortodoxii tokko jedhame. Nafxanyaa Oromoo fi Moslima fi Waaqeffannaa Oromoo abbaa biyyaa gargar baaasuuf inn nafxanyaan akka itt cuubamee, jara kaan ciigahu tahe. Gaaffiin Oromoo sanyeessaa tahuu fi dhiisuu saa yoo Habashaa dhugaa tahanillee utuu soda haxaawa lammiin hin baaragin ofumaa mirkaneeffchuu qabu.

Sana malee murna Oromoon Afrikaa keessaa lafa hinqabu jedhanitt makamuun eenyummaa ofii haaluu yk of jibbuu taha. Sanatt dabalee Minilik II illee an “Mootii Habashaa fi Biyyoota Oromoo” ti ofiin jedhe dhara jechuu taha. Nafxanyaa duraa dilormaa Oromoo walakaa ol, moo’umma, aadaa, afaan, eenyummaa sabummaa, fi dudhaa saanii garalaafina tokko malee mancaase. Sun hundi seenaaf yaadatamu malee dhaloota abbaawummaa itt hin qabne tuquuf miti. Haatahu maleehala amma jiru keessatt eenyuu kan hamajaajummaa sanaan itt fufee ummata kolonichaaf tuffii agarsiisu gocha yakka deggeruu saaf abbaawummaa fudhachuu jalaa hin bahu.

Seeraan bulummaa, demokraasii fi birmadummaan uumamu malee godinicha keessatt nagaa fi tasgabiin hin jiraatuu. Koloneeffataan nagaa fi tasgabii naannichaa irraa bu’aa argatu hin qabu. Seeraan bulummaa, demokraasii fi tasgabin qabeenya kolonootaatt saaqaa addaa hin kennuufi. kanaaf mirga hiree sabummaa ofii ofiin muteeffachuu kolonootaa kan walabummaa dabalatu, mirga demokraatawaa tahe, hin fudhatu. Kana irratt dabalee kanneen mirga ilmaan namaatt yeroo tahitaa irra jiran roorrisan dheekkamsa qajeeltuutt isaan saaxilaa. Kanaaf fedhaan tahitaa gaddhiisuun saanii waan hin yaadamne. Qabsaawoti marsaa hundatt daddaaquun furmaata hin tahuu; ejjennoo sirrii fudhachuu qofatu baasaa. Mirgi ilmaan namaa kan eenyuu namaa kennu utuu hin tahin Yaa’ii Addunyaan kan beekamee. Hardha humni Oromoo mirga sabaa kabachiisuuf jabaatee hin ijaaramne haa tahu malee sochiin walabummaa ummati godhu tasaawaan, ariitiin konkolaataa jira. Oromoo waahidhibnee hataatuu bu’uursituun Habashaa, jaallatee dhiiftee qabsoon walabummaa hin dhaabbatu. ABOn akka sagantaan saa ajajutt ABO tahee itt fufuuf walabummaa qofaaf ijaajjuu malee sanaa gaditt waanti tahu hin jiru.

Kan itt haanu akka hundi beekuuf murtoo ST (UN) 3070 30, Sadaasaa 1973tii: (furaan afaanii kan kanati)

Yaa’iin idilee ∙∙∙

1.Keessa deebi’ee mirga ummata kolonummaa fi olhantummaa halagaa jala jiran hin tuqamne kan hiree murteeffachuu, birmadummaa fi walabummaa akka murtoo Yaa’ii Idilee 1514 (XV) 14, Muddee 1960, 2649(XXV) 30, Sadaasa 1970 fi 2787 (XXVI) 6 Mudde 1971;

2. Akkasumas seerawummaa qabsoon ummatootaa bilisummaa kolonummaa fi olhantummaa biyya alaa fi gadiqaba halagaa jalaa bahuuf karaa jiru hundaan qabsoo hidhannoo dabalachuun tolchan keessa deebinee mirkaneessina:

3. Akka Chartera Saboota Tokkoomanii fi Konvenshinoota Saboota Tokkoomanii dubbiin laalutt mirga ummatooti hundii hiree saanii murteeffachuu fi walabummaaf qabanii fi gargaarsa jajjabeessaa, waatattaa fi gargaarsa biraa ummataa shakala guutu mirga saanii hin tuqamne kan hiree murteeffachuu fi walabummaaf qabsaawaa jiranii hundaaf akka godhan finnoota hundaaf waamicha goonaaf:

Ummatoota humna hoodaa moototaan sodaachisuun qaata dukkanaawe. Yeros imaammatooti moototaa xuraawoo hundi jecha “Moototi homaa hin balleessan” jedhuun golgamuun akka waan isaan burqaa qajeeltuu dogoggora hin qabneett dhiheefamu turan. Amma hoodi sun cabee hogganooti empayeritt olgaa dhaabbachuun humnni saanii qullaa tahe saaxilamaa jira. Imaammatoota saanii cunqursoo tahan hojii irra oolchuu irraa of fageessuu hin dandahanii. Mootota Habashaa duriif, dudhaan karaan itt waan tokko tokko qajeelfatan yoo jiraateyyuu, seeraan bulmaati dhimma saanii tahee hin beeku. Jarri ammaa karaa halle too’annaa jala oolfatanii waan jiraniif gocha saaniif isaanumatu abbaa dhaddachaati. Kanaaf Habashaa roorroo angoo irraa baraaruu fi ummatoota kolonii namummaa baafamuu fi badiisa irraa oolchuuf jarri baduu qabu. Tuuti addagee biyya bulchuun cubbuu dha. Wayyaaneen ulfina dabaanbulummaa ofiin dhihoo karaa bahaa qabata. Garuu gaaffiin bilisa baaftoti Oromiyaa deebisuu qaban itt haaneewoo kan jedhu?

Iyyi “Goolii” Wayyaaneef mala ittiin jara dhihaa keessaayyuu US irraa gargaarsaa fi hubannoo itt argatuu. Dhugaan saa isuma mootummaarra jiru malee, gooltuun biraa empayera Itophiyaa keessa hin jirtuu. Uumaa saa isa dhugaa dhossee shororkeessituu dha jedhee yeroo inni nama lakkoofsa hin qabne hidhuu fi ajjeesu mararfannoo akka kennaniif barbaada. Garuu jarri gooltuu utuu hin tahin Oromoo dha; mataa ol qabatanii akka hin deemnee fi ugganii qajeeltuu akka hin gaafanneef goolaani. Gargaarsa jajjabeesaa fi waatattaa argataniin akeeka ofii Oromoo gadqabaa jala jiraachisuu fiixaan baafachuuf imaammata gooltuu loluu jala gugatanii bobba’aa jiru. Sagalee Oromoo hin sarmineef faaluuf dhaaba malbulchaa Kallacha qabsoosaa tahe gooltuutt moggaase.

Gabaasii dhaboota mirga ilmaan namaa mootummaan Itophiyaa akka ummata ofiitt, keessaayyuu Oromoott roorrisu saxilaa jiru. Oromoon ummata seeraan buloo, nagaa jaallatoo fi dudhaa demokraasii qabanii. Dhugeeffannoo kamuu haa qabaatanii hanga yoonaa karisummaan Oromoo keessatt hin muldhannee. Yeroo nagaa fi araaratt dhufu duubbeen saanii Gadaa kan irraanfatame hin fakkaatuu. Amantooti hundi marsaa malbulcha sabichaa keessatt bakkaa fi qooda ofii beeku. Yaada cichaa hunda jala seenuu dura loltuu fi naga buusoo beekamoo turani. Ammallee “walitt bu’a qaroomaa”f utuu hin tahin, birmadummaa fi walabummaa biyya saanii, Oromiyaaf annisaa lolaa fi nagaa buusuu qabu. Qaroommi saanii hunda hammataa tahuun beekama. Miseensi amantee yk murna amantee kamuu Oromiyaa keessatt takkaa akka nambiyyoota sadakaa lammafaatt ilaalamanii hin beekanii; Habashaa keessatt garuu akka addunyaatt hodeessan utuu hin tahin yeroo hin beekamnee kaasee ciiga’amnii ifaa dhaa.

Duula maqaa faalaa wayyaaneen utuu hin raafamin sun qayyabatamuu qaba. Oromoon gaaga’amtoota Wayyaaneeti malee cookkoo saa miti. Oromiyaan biyya goototaati. Gooti yoomuu tapha walgitu fedha. Jeequmsi kan hin hidhannee fi noola qubaa hin qabne irratt raawwatamuu hin qabu. Sun ogummaa Wayyaaneen ittii leenjifame. Sana kan inni Oromoo irratt gochaa Oromoon gooltuu dha jedhee caraanuu. Oromoon gooltuu dha jedhamuu kan dandahu yoo gadqaba halagaa ofirraa faccisuun sana jedhame qofa. Sun waan fedhe haa tahu Oromoon waraana halagaa irra buufatee jiru loluu hanga mirgi hiree ofii murteeffachuu hojiirra ooluufitt itt fufa.

Ulfinaa fi surraan dabaankufootaaf; walabummaa, walqixxummaa fi bilisummaan kan hafaniif; nagaa fi araarri Ayyaana abboolii fi ayyoliif haa tahu!

Ibsaa Guutama
Muddee  2014 

Source: http://ayyaantuu.com/horn-of-africa-news/oromia/habasha-myth-and-peoples-liberation-hooda-habashaa-fi-bilisummaa-ummataa/