By Keffyalew Gebremedhin The Ethiopia Observatory (TEO)
As I was leafing through Ethiopia pages this morning, I came across an article entitled Ethiopia: Ethnic nationalism and the Gondar protests on Aigaforum. Addis Standard’s Kalkidan Yibeltal is its author, whom I thank for the pleasure of reading it already yesterday, January 11.
This morning I saw it again on Aigaforum. I felt ashamed reading the TPLF self-serving chapeau they crafted for the article. ‘Chapeau, this French word is used for headdress, or sort of a hat intended to protect the head from bad weather. Therefore, before pasting the article on the TPLF page they put their ugly hat on top of the journalist’s article.
Here is Aiga’s six-sentence poison:
“We are posting this analysis to highlight the danger that is looming ahead for all Ethiopians! If you think the recent disturbance was not the work of a foreign enemy that wants the disintegration of Ethiopia think twice! So far the enemy has failed with its plan thanks to the men and women from the command post! The enemy is trying to create wedges between our people. It is time to raise our unity in diversity flag and deny the enemy a space in-between us. If the enemy succeeds there will not be Ethiopia!”
The way I understood the article, there is no element in it one could term bad or unfair. All that is noticeable is the writer’s diligence in tackling as objectively as possible the real story under the current martial law environment, which has deprived citizens of all human rights. For me, the writer has tried to present the popular uprising in Amhara and Oromia – over 63 percent of Ethiopians – saying no to the TPLF, its corruption and ethnic discrimination.
Where and how the TPLF cadres at Aigaforum saw the foreign forces that are working to break Ethiopia beats me. One gets the impression that the TPLF people did not like the article, or worse, they did not understand it at all. It is also probably like the Amharic saying: “ፈስ ያለበት…” – the problem of gas in the 190cm long human guts!
Therefore, instead of examining the evil actions of their ruling party over Ethiopia and its citizens and finding a political solution to the questions that have angered Ethiopians across the land – as a matter of habit – they find it easier to accuse someone, anyone, everyone bagging them all into a box called “foreign enemy” that is working day and night “to create wedges between our people.”
This is baloney, as Americans would say when they are pissed off with a nonsensical, such as this!
If the TPLF people have read the article properly, actually what the writer foresees is a realistic possibility in Ethiopia, stating:
“If Amhara nationalism grows in prominence, the relationship with Oromo nationalism might be decisive for the country’s future.”
This is real and possibly inevitable, which I think and hope is what all Ethiopians want.
I salute Kalkidan Yibeltal, as a matter of fact not only her journalistic qualities and depth. But also her beautiful name that brings smile on my face and enjoyment of saying them in my mouth. Her name signifies to me the the essence of the Ethiopia I grew up in and proudly associate myself with.
As a concerned professional for Ethiopia and its citizens and, as responsible individual, what she forewarns Ethiopians – something the TPLF cadres have missed the point of in that article – is about the dangerous consequence of TPLF greed, violence and ethnic discriminations. In that Kalkidan thus warns:
“Amid these immediate and pressing challenges, the rise in Amhara nationalism creates more turbulence in the region, raising questions that no one yet seems able to answer.”
To put it in clear terms, let me say, I worry for my country, much as I do for all Ethiopians, also in particular for the people of Tigrayans. For exaggerated fault of theirs, they have been made to carry the burden of hatred and everything else that is supposed to land on the TPLF mafia face.
It is understood that the constrictions of TPLF repression have also been affecting Tigrayans, although the TPLF has been claiming them to be the ‘golden people’ all the same subjecting them to mistreatments. However, their hearts seek better days to come, even when most of them at one time or another felt each of them was in power, according to Gen. Tsadkan Gebretensae, who in August 2016 confirmed Tigreans worry about losing ‘their power’.
The question now is whether, as Ethiopians, we could live together in peace, dignity and equality. This approach could help stop Ethiopia from breaking. If Ethiopia is not to break, then the TPLF must end its repression. The TPLF must end its ethnic discrimination.
Tigrayans must help end TPLF robbing Ethiopia in the name of Tigray to enrich the Front’s big bosses. It must end its robbery of Ethiopia, especially Ethiopian banks, the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia, the Development Bank of Ethiopia, which have been made financial transmission belts to Dedebit projects. It must liquidate the Metal and Engineering Corporation (METEC), another robbery channel and also end TPLF’s EFFORT companies creating jobs for themselves to siphon off Ethiopian resources – cementing their power over the inequality of other Ethiopians.
The TPLF has been even confounding the African Development Bank (AfDB) and succeeded in having it finance Alemeda Textile, and EFFORT (its own) manufacturing company Ethiopia paying back the loan. I do not believe that the TPLF bosses would be free to enjoy all those billions they have stolen from other Ethiopians. How on earth those TPLF fighters who came with shirts on their backs could now become the billionaires, owners of those businesses, not to speak of the high rise buildings?
In conclusion, there is no any other option to TPLF yielding, voluntarily or through popular pressure, to the rule of law. Only then could Ethiopia go forward on the path of one man one vote and democracy and individual sovereignty. What we had in this quarter century was TPLF-imposed slavery through the force of arms, selling the nation’s honor to the highest bidder and electoral thievery by which it realized its goal of all the votes into its ballot box.
To heal the ethnic crack the TPLF has created would take a while. Today’s Tigrean intellectuals have a record of abandoning even their kith and kin, and as such not much could be expected from them at this point.
For the rest of Ethiopians, it takes a great deal of efforts on the part of ordinary citizens – everyone to put Ethiopia along a democratic path of equality, friendship and prosperity in every sense.
Only that way, and with all sensibilities combined, could we rescue our country from the path of destruction and disintegration. It is the only first home we have had on this planet.
Individual and national freedom will have to be wrestled out of the jaws of the soulless TPLF mafia. Be it in Amhara or in Oromia, it would be a folly as the martial law has shown, to expect Ethiopians to contemplate turning back into servitude to the TPLF!