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Gabcast! Gotoota Oromo Haa Yaadannu. #17 - Wallee.

Saturday, January 21, 2006

A note to CUD leadership and the neo-chauvinists from a concerned Oromo. Part VII

A note to CUD leadership and the neo-chauvinists from a concerned Oromo.
Part VII

Despite the never-ending allegations by you that EPRDF dismantled the unified Ethiopia, it did not create any Liberation Front. All the Liberation Fronts (TPLF, OLF, ONLF, ELF and EPLF etc) were created during or before Mengistu's time. What happened after the removal of Mengistu from power was that most of these Liberation Fronts dropped their initial agenda of secession/ independence from Ethiopia and opted to participate in the Transitional Government thus preparing the ground for a democratic Ethiopia, while you the Amharas decided to pursue different line. For you, Ethiopian Unity can only be achieved if and only if the Amharas are the ones at the centre - as a leader - but not as an equal member of a group.

What TPLF and OLF did after coming to power and at least up until 1992, was that they tried to cement these demanded rights by the oppressed nations and nationalities of Ethiopia in the newly enacted Constitution by including Article 39. If there is any dissatisfaction by the Oromos and other oppressed nationalities it is not the inclusion of the Article in the Constitution itself but the non-implementation of the letters and spirits of the Article. Article 39, if only implemented properly, is a guarantee for the oppressed nationals /nationalities to live in equality. But for you, the Amhara elites, the inclusion of this Article in the Constitution is the sign of disuniting Ethiopia. I don't blame you. You grew up without being affected by the previous ruling systems (you were actually a direct beneficiary) and hence any change or mention of the Rights of Nations to Self-Determination has a chilling effect on you. The standard of measurement for Ethiopia's unity should not be the fact that the language of instruction at school and deliberations at courts remain Amharic. It is also not to have a fake unity.

What exactly is that made you uncomfortable if the Oromos for example use afaan Oromo instead of Amharic? What is wrong with Article 39 (if only it is implemented properly) when we all know that the national question in Ethiopia existed for as along as the Amhara ruling system exited and that it is not because of this article that the nations unity is in danger? I have been trying hard to understand you and your agenda for a democratic Ethiopia but I fail to see any convincing argument in it which could remotely indicate that you are for Unity and Democracy. I have all the reasons to remain suspicious of your objectives. I may be wrong and stand to be corrected but judging from your writings and public speeches it seems to me that you want to restore the rotten Amhara ruling system under the pretext of "Ethiopian unity." You seem to forget though we already placed the last nail on the coffin of the Amhara ruling system in February 1975. Although you tend to believe in reincarnation thus hopping to see that buried system alive once again, we the oppressed people will make sure that we add more nails and seal the coffin so that it never re-appears. By design or coincidence, you seem to disregard the concern and undermine the capacity of the sleeping giant - the Oromo people and wanted to find "solutions" by yourself and by excluding them. While you know that OLF is the salt and pepper for the Oromos you did not even dare to establish contact with the leadership of this cardinal organization for a common strategy.

In my opinion, any attempt to solve our nation's problem without solving the problem of the oppressed nations and nationalities in general and that of the Oromos in particular will end in disaster. Tell us what is on your menu for us - the Oromos? You have dozens on the list but they all boil down to one main menu - Ethiopian unity. It reminded me of one restaurant in remote town of Kyrghyzstan where I was offered exactly the same type of food for entrée, main course and dessert for the entire duration of my stay there which lasted for about two weeks. But we Ethiopians especially the oppressed people have all the right to chose between restaurants and in doing so we will retain the right to chose the best one which offers different menu. Instead of offering us only "unity" from breakfast all the way to dinner, we prefer to have, freedom, equality, non-discrimination and a beautiful dessert called Unity and only in that order. You still have a chance, if only you are willing to do so, to change the chef (cook) and adjust your menu according to our above need. We have no problem becoming one of your frequent customers and even promoters of your "business" to the outsiders provided that you meet our gastronomical demands of course. Had your agenda been clearer to us, believe me the 30+ million Oromo people would have been advised to apply measures against EPRDF and play a significant role in ushering in an all-inclusive democratic government. As a matter of fact, no one would have loved the change of EPRDF regime more than the Oromos because they suffered the most. Arbitrary detention, torture, killing and disappearance of hundreds of thousands of innocent Oromos have been our fate for the last fourteen years. However, there is still a room for us to create a forum where we can speak the same language with you and prepare a ground for a democratic government. But such a possible coalition should not take a form of an Oromo-Amhara "coalition" against the Tigres. It should rather be a coalition of all democratic forces, organizations and individuals from different ethnic groups including those from Tigray who are against the policies of EPRDF as a ruling party and have a vision to explore avenues for the creation of democratic Ethiopia.

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