Visiting Ethiopia, UN human rights chief urges new Government to ‘keep positive momentum going’ (27.04.2018)

The United Nations human rights chief on Thursday expressed hope that Ethiopia continues its economic development in which human rights are respected and people can freely speak their minds about public policies.

NEW YORK, United States of America, April 27, 2018 – “We all want to see an Ethiopia with continuous economic development where all people benefit, and where people express their views on public policies, unafraid,” said UN High Commissioner for Human Rights Zeid Ra’ad Al Hussein at the end of his official visit to Ethiopia.

His visit followed the country’s recent transition of power from the Government led by Hailemariam Desalegn, who abruptly resigned as prime minister in March, to the new one led by Abiy Ahmed.

A country with one of the fastest-growing economies in world, Ethiopia has also been riven by human rights violations and oppression on protests by those demanding equality.

“Moments of transition are rarely ever smooth. Ethiopia has struggled with a heavy history, but it has the wisdom of a tolerant, vibrant, youthful population to harness,” said Mr. Zeid, encouraging the authorities to keep the positive momentum going and to keep translating the inspiring words in the Prime Minister’s inaugural address into action.

Mr. Zeid was referring to the Prime Minister’s recognition that there is a “need to address existing inequities that led to recent unrest,” that “democracy cannot be realised in the absence of rights – be it civil or economic rights” and that the “right of people to express opinions, rights of people to organise themselves and engage in effective dialogue and participate in the governance system is inherent in our humanity…not for any government to bestow…as it sees fit.”

The UN rights chief also welcomed the release of a large number of people, including bloggers, political opponents and others who had been detained in relation to their participation in protests and their criticism of the Government.

“There was tremendous hope, but also anxiety,” he said, citing the words of a former political detainee, who said: “we have repeatedly been victims of broken promises.”

During a visit to the Oromia region, Mr. Zeid met with the regional authorities and the traditional leaders, known as the Aba Gadas, who he said spoke about how they will continue to push for the truth to be told about what has happened over the past few years, including deaths during protests.

“They demanded investigations and accountability for excessive use of force by the authorities. They expressed their desire for justice and human rights for all Ethiopians and for their voices to be heard without fear of reprisal,” Mr. Zeid said.

On Wednesday, the UN Human Rights Office for East Africa and the Ethiopian Government signed an agreement to strengthen the Office’s ability to do human rights work in the country and the region.

The Office has already offered its assistance in revising the charities and societies proclamation, the anti-terrorism legislation and the mass media laws.

“In this 70th anniversary year of the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, when too many leaders risk reversing hard-won human rights gains, we look to Ethiopia to continue to give cause for optimism and hope,” Mr. Zeid said.

The PAFD Press Statement On Ongoing State-Terrorism And Government Instigated Ethnic Conflicts (18.04.2018)

The TPLF/EPRDF army and security apparatuses are wrecking mayhem throughout Ethiopia as the operation of State of Emergency intensifies with degree of unprecedented barbarism in Oromia and throughout the country, even after the new PM has been appointed by TPLF/EPRDF. The killing of dozens of unarmed civilians is also intensifying in various Oromia regional state as are the imprison- ment of civilians in Ogaden Somali since the new PM, Dr Abiy Ahmed has sworn in on April 02, 2018. The PAFD categorically condemns with all possible terms the EPRDF/TPLF’s State terrorism in Ethiopia and urges the EPRDF/TPLF to call for an urgent transitional arrangement.

The inauguration speech of the new PM has been meticulously crafted with a lot of positive attributes albeit with the objective of achieving one key target of erroneously uplifting the spirit of often dejected mass. All peoples of Ethiopia who’ve lost hope and trust in TPLF/EPRDF during its 27 years reign of divide and conquer thought there is going to be a glimmer of hope, although it has become apparent that nothing has changed apart from paying lip-services.

Meanwhile, the killings of and an arbitrary detention of civilians has increasingly continued in various regions with severity in Oromia. The instigation of ethnic conflicts between peacefully coexisted nations such as the Oromo and Gedeo, Oromo and Ogaden Somali and the rest is increasing albeit the imposi- tion of State of Emergency and murdering of civilians. In Oromia regional state where the TPLF/ EPRDF’s army and security apparatuses are saturated, in addition to April 17, 2018’s Moyale carnage, the daily executions of unarmed dozens of civilians including a pregnant woman known by the name

‘Ayyaantuu Mohaammad Shaanqoo’ in East Oromia Hararge Zone, Mee’sso town on April 8, 2018 has increased. Initially, the indicated Oromo pregnant woman was approached by the Agaazi forces who demanded her for a gang-rape. As she refused to obey their sadistic orders, they forced her to her knees and shot her on her head with three bullets to instantly kill her. Additionally, an elderly Oromo man known by the name ‘Mardaasaa Yaadasaa’ in Qellem district of Wallaggaa zone, Sadii Caanqaa sub district, Koomboo village has been executed by TPLF/EPRDF’s Agaazi on April 13, 2018 who broke into his house before dawn by further seriously wounding his son who is fighting for his life in hospital.

In Ogaden Somali the detention of politicians and deliberately denying water and food to civilians in various districts is widespread as part of indirect killing of hundreds of deliberately targeted civilians

with the objectives of depopulating Ogaden Somali. Moreover, the TPLF/EPRDF’s regime is also de- ploying the Ogaden Somali detainees who have been recently released for a forced labour where the la- bourers are often denied food and water until they die. Today (April 18, 2018) the TPLF/EPRDF’s re- gional agents -the Solomali Liyu militia executed an Ogadeni Somali woman known by the name

‘Rooda Yaasiin Muhumed’ in Kabribayah town of the region for no apparent reason. In Sidama the displacement of thousands of peasants from their lands of Hawassa proximity is intensifying by turning

the majority to virtual beggars in their own land. In Gambella, Amhara, Afar, the entire south and Benshangul, the plights of civilians remain as precarious as it was 15 or 20 years ago. The situation all over the country remains as fluid as it has been a year ago despite the short-lived Euphoria of the majority after the inauguration of the new PM two weeks ago.

Therefore, the PAFD categorically deplores the ongoing killing and arbitrary detentions of civilians in various parts of the country including in Oromia, Ogaden Somali, Amhara, Afar, Gambella and elsewhere. We urge the new PM and his EPRDF’s party to unconditionally lift the State of Emergency, release all political prisoners and call for an unconditional all- inclusive transitional arrangement in Ethiopia to restore law and order that remain distant from the peoples of Ethiopia for the past 27 years.

Finally, the PAFD’s once again renews its calls of London February 2018 all-inclusive confer- ence to opposition groups of all peoples of Ethiopia to unconditionally put aside their differ- ences to agree to work together to achieve the highly-craved democratic changes by struggling in unison. We also call upon all politicians, civic society, academics and religious groups to open their minds and hearts to come to term to realistically address the demands of the major- ity in Ethiopia in unison. Recognising and appreciating the recent approval of House Resolu- tion (HR-128) in America, we finally call upon all the international political players to do more in defending the rights of over 104 million peoples in Ethiopian by unconditionally and fully supporting their struggle until they achieve their dream of living in a free and democratic country where her leaders are held into account for their actions and accountable to their con- stituents.

Justice, Freedom and Equality For All Peoples In Ethiopia!

The Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD), April 18, 2018

Patriotic Ginbot 7 Movement for Unity and Democracy: On the passage of H.Res. 128 “Supporting respect for human rights and encouraging inclusive governance in Ethiopia” (15.04.2018)

PM Abiy has shown his swagger, but the EPRDF acts and sounds much like the same!

I know it is just under 2 weeks since the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Force (EPRDF) got a new Chairman and Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali. Just days after now, he has been traveling and having meetings within the regions highly affected by the prolonged State of Emergency with the draconian laws and military forces attacking civilians, arresting and stopping ordinary activity. Therefore, it is important that the Prime Minister traveling and meeting people in Oromia, even in Amhara later too. But just traveling, while having Agazi squad is still killing people. The numbers since takeover is already up-to six. There might be more, but that is the ones that is reported.

The EPRDF, the state and government are still keeping their Command Post and the military at bay. They are still silencing the people and their protests. There is still internally displaced people and the military, still has the final say. There is a change of the top inside the ruling coalition, but their activity hasn’t changed.

That is both proven in the condemnation of the United States House Resolution 128, that was voted on in the Representatives House yesterday. Not that is direct sanctions against the ERPDF, but it is a sign of change from Washington D.C. However, the EPRDF are condemning it, instead of asking themselves how the US came to that conclusion and assessment of the Ethiopian struggle. The EPRDF should instead work on change from within, unless they want the protesters to continue. Since, they haven’t done much, than small tokens.

It is a big deal that the PM offers a visit of the Opposition leaders at the Palace today, that they are in the lavish and the nice venue listening to the PM. As he eloquently saying the words needed to be said, but the acts of EPRDF isn’t much change, but more of the same. That is why the killings continue, the arrests and the lack of reconciliation. This is the first step, but if the EPRDF want to really open up. They need the SoE gone away and they need to negotiate to have proper elections and trustworthy National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE). Not one rigging for the EPRDF and their Allied Parties.

We know that the EPRDF has no plan of directly changing, they think they can get away with changing the PM and make him speak softly around the Republic. Instead of actually making a difference. That is why the Local Elections are postponed again, instead of showing opportunity to freshen the local government in Addis Ababa and Dire Dawa for instance.

The Ethiopian Government should be careful of their activity, as they have detained the leadership of the protest again, the famous writers and politicians that they recently released. I am not the sort of guy traded-off on beautiful speeches, even if I also can be carried away. Dr. Abiy has been able to pick his words wisely, but its time for the first steps of actions. If he wants to be the change or not a puppet. Right now he looks like a puppet and smells like a puppet. He has a nice tone and done some nice public appearances. However, it is not enough.

Not if the EPRDF want to be something else than the Woyane, the TPLF go-lucky gang who oppress the protest and the will of the people. Knowing how they look at themselves, we can see that from Seifeselassie Gebre who wrote this: “However, it is quite refreshing to see some lawmakers such as Senator Inhofe who had the courage to speak the truth by chastising the bill as nothing more than an opportunistic interference at a time Ethiopia finds itself at a critical juncture. The honorable thing for the congressmen would have been to congratulate the new PM and also applaud and commend the peaceful transfer of power that was made possible by (1) EPRDF’s time-tested internal deliberation and selection process for power transition, (2) the timely imposition of the State of Emergency that gave the government enough time to hash out its differences and reach a consensus regarding the selection of a new leader” (Seifeselassie Gebre – ‘H.Res-128: A Pretext in Search of a Neo-liberal Colony’ 12.04.2018, Tigraionline.com).

When you read this your blood should be boiling, as the goodness of the unnecessary deaths, the detentions of rights of the Amhara and Oromo people are put on the altar of one switching chair in Addis Ababa. Instead of thinking of the consequences of the State of Emergency, the TPLF supporters, are saying the Americans are meddling. They shouldn’t look directly at the meddling, but the results and the activity of the military, the Command Post and Agazi Squad in the regions of protest. That is if, the value of life matters to the TPLF and the EPRDF. It is a smack to the face of a Sovereign nations to get a resolution like it did, but they haven’t acted with humans intent. Only to keep power and silence the Queerro of Oromia and the Amhara too. That got to stop!

If the EPRDF is serious, the first thing that has to happen, is to stop the State of Emergency. Second is to recalling the Agazi squad and military police out of the streets into the barracks. Third stop the road-blocks and fourth quit the draconian laws silencing the people. That from the Anti-Terror Law and the Codes put on the SoE. All of that has to stop, then there is time for nice speeches and trying to negotiate, to make a change from the current acts of the EPRDF. Because right now, the government are putting a nice act in-front of the world. But it hasn’t changed the system, neither the disrespectful interference in the citizens lives.

That is why the TPLF, the Woyane, the EPRDF, cannot only send Dr. Abiy as a puppet and speak of elegance and finesse. But he needs to show in acts in Parliament, there need to be votes to stop the State of Emergency. The Parliament needs to investigate the violence, the killings of innocent civilians and the arbitrary arrests. So justice can be for all and the ones who has misused power can get the punishment for their ill-will against the will of the people. The protesters has the right to get that. Even if someone believes silencing them is their god-given right. They shouldn’t, the Oromo and Amhara deserves a better fate. Just like the Tigrai. They don’t own it all.

We know all isn’t what it seems, when ESAT are reporting this:

The new prime ministers of the EPRDF are saying that they do not believe that the EPRDF line will continue. (ESAT News April 4, 2010) The current Prime Minister, Abiy Ahmed, is calling on the EPRDF line. According to the sources of ESAT’s EPRDF sources, some of the existing leaders of the EPRDF leadership, Ato Sibhat Nega, Abay Hailaye, Bere Simeon, Patriarch Joseph, Seyoum Mesfin, and others who have served in the organization, follow the politics of the new Prime Minister instead of the developmental ideology of the EPRDF. They are insisting that they will have to live up to their promises, and that they are more likely to listen to the opposition than the EPDRF. These new leaders, who have started a new campaign on the EPRDF line, have said that the new prime ministers are eager to save the EPRDF line without a desire to extend the EPRDF line. The ruling party has been in the process of mobilizing different supporters, saying that the Oromia region has created a bad system in our country and is a landlocked country. Although the regions have been given the power to govern themselves, the leadership of the National Intelligence and Security Service is in the process of revolving around the central authority, and the current leaders, who are said to be under attack, If they are going to engage with opponents without permission, then threatening to take action to protect the survival and protection of the archives. He added that the former leaders are gathering opinions, even those who are popular, and that the people have given their trust and confidence that the new prime minister will bring about real change” (ESAT, 12.04.2018).

We have to see if it is all public swagger from the new PM or if the EPRDF are real about it. I doubt it, since the killings has continued since the swearing-in. As long as innocent dies for any government to live, you know something is wrong. It doesn’t matter for who and where, it is just wrong. Peace.

Opinion: Did Abiy follow Hailemariam 2012 script on Eritrea?

I don’t like being fooled, but sometimes it happens. This might be coincidence, and most like not. It is not like the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Force (EPRDF) and their coalition parties has done this without thinking. As of yesterday, the newly selected and appointed Chairman and Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali took over for incumbent Hailemariam Desalegn. Why I wonder if the thing we saw yesterday was real, is because of this. Deja vu’ is not my cup of tea, but maybe if I drink something stronger, it might be swallowed without thinking.

2012 Ethiopian PM:

“If you ask me, ‘Do you want to go to Asmara and sit down and negotiate with Isaias Afwerki?’ Then, I will say yes’,” Hailemariam said in an interview with Al Jazeera to be broadcast on Saturday” (Al Jazeera – ‘Ethiopia PM willing to talk to Eritrea’ 06.12.2018).

2018 Ethiopian PM:

Speaking on state television after his swearing-in ceremony, Mr Abiy called for an end to “years of misunderstandings”. “I call on the Eritrean government to take the same stand,” he said” (BBC News – ‘Ethiopia PM Abiy Ahmed wants to resolve Eritrea disputes’ 02.04.2018).

Both of them talk of addressing the grievances with the brothers of Eritrea, but will there be any changes here? Or is this a marketing plot of making people look away from the troubles beneath the surface?

I have doubts that this change quickly, since it has been stalemate so long. Unless, the EPRDF plans to change their inner-works. However, there is no sign of military changes, neither with the internal problems of yet. The state has detained people for celebrating the new PM in Dire Dawa, where youth we’re taken directly to a Military Camp, while also Woman and their children was detained for celebrating the new PM. The State of Emergency are still creating more arrests and arbitrary at best. All people can for various of reasons, end behind bars.

Therefore, I don’t take the words to heart, neither expect much to appear, I feel more I see a mirage, than the real. Unless, something substantially changes. If the framework, the idea of the EPRDF government changes, because right now it is a new PM, but the structure is the same and the actions are more of the same. It has only been a hot-minute, but he has to really deliver and show it. Not only redecorate a office and smile to camera. Than, he is just another puppet for the TPLF and the current central government, who has no issues taking protesters and civilian hostages in their nation. That has been evident and still is. Unless, the PM wants that changed.

Time to see, but I not yet believing, since I also the similar tune between the two PMs and the previous one, didn’t do squat about the Eritrean questions or the Badme land-grab. There is just to many things left unfinished. PM Abiy needs time, but he is laying himself traps and the scenario isn’t change for the better. He rose to power swiftly, but if he will carry the dialogue with protesters and keep EPRDF at bay, that is the next question. Since, he has enough turmoil inside, to be dealing with foreign nuisance too.

We have heard it before, it is time to see action, but will we? Peace.

A Powerful Speech from PM Dr. Abiy Ahmed, but will he deliver?

I want it all to go well, we all want to see Ethiopia prosper and be friendly with its neighbors. We all wants to see that, that the farmers get their deserved pay for their harvest, the traders their value of the products and the right price on the exports before leaving for the ports of Djibouti or Somaliland. That is natural. The Federal Government of Ethiopia has to deliver that, the government of Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Front (EPRDF), the coalition government with a new Chairman and Prime Minister from today on.

It is now official, the Oromo People’s Democratic Organization (OPDO) get their leader on top of the coalition party, that is Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali. The other parties get other positions and also, there has not been changes in the parliament or within the Council’s of Ministers. Therefore, the only change has been the head and not the hierarchy. The EPRDF is still the same, but with a new guy on the top.

His speech today was powerful and refreshing, the words and prospects are golden, they are vital, but will he act upon them? Will the new Prime Minister challenge the Command Post and the Military, who are occupying the provinces with military forces and taken away the liberties and democratic freedoms. Therefore, if the speech should have any value, the new PM has to act and do it within EPRDF. Which will be interesting, as to see if he is allowed or controlled. As it is easy to speak, it is to write, but harder to sanction or even enforce changes. Especially if it cost for certain parties.

Dr. Abiy also said that this power transition is a historic moment in the country. Disagreements are not the result of disagreement, but they are the result of better understanding when it comes to understanding the principle. As the democracy does not originate from the government, it is considered to be a solution, “he said. Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed said that the right to freedom of expression, assembly and association should be respected by the constitution and that public participation should be strengthened. He said that they should not seek to interfere with the rights of others to demand a democratic right. In order to achieve the rule of law in our country, democracy and the rule of law will prevail, freedom and justice will be realized” (Ethiopian Broadcasting Company, 02.03.2018).

This is promising hopes and changes from the government, who has used all techniques, all use of force and taken away all freedoms of the protesters, detained thousands of them, killed numerous and who knows how many ended up at the hospitals in the provinces. Therefore, the civilian casualties made by the state fighting their own citizens, has to stop, the military siege of Amhara and Oromia has to stop. That is a serious change of pattern, secondly stop the road-blocks, the stop of suspension of a political gatherings, all rules and regulation made by the fresh State of Emergency. That is if, the EPRDF are serious about the words the PM said.

The provinces has to see this, it is well thought of speech, a speech of hope and of promise. But the words will fall flat, unless he works upon it. Take talks with the stakeholders, have community meetings and meets with the groups whose been seen as terrorists and anti-government. When, they are really just working for their own liberty and freedom. As the government has oppressed and been besieging their homes, and their lands.

That has to change, if his rhetoric is a mirage or a make belief, or if he is the real deal. The citizens deserves that, the great nation of Ethiopia does so too. But will the new PM deliver or will the Council of Ministers stop him? Will the other Committee’s overpower him? Peace.

EPRDF statement speaks of a new Renaissance: Pardon me, but I don’t see it yet!

Today, the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Force (EPRDF) Council has left a statement on the State Television Ethiopian Broadcasting Company on their Facebook, it is really revealing, that they are trailing and trying to figure the next steps out, as the new chairman and new Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed Ali, will have to find away within the coalition structure and with the turmoil that is currently there. The EPRDF have ways to figure this out, the new PM Dr. Abyi can either work for the agenda of the Woyane, since has to trade their water, as well as not insult the wishes for more liberty and freedoms in the regions, where the state is currently battling them with a fresh State of Emergency.

What the EPRDF Council said to today, is revealing, I will take the piece that caught my eye: “The EPRDF Council has evaluated several factors that have not resulted in a timely adjustment of this problem, and its main reason is that the lack of public service in our organization is weakening and the tendency to use and control the power of personal power. Numerous mistakes have undergone the good start of the successful process as the whole of the changes that we have recorded over the past 27 years has been attributed to the strength of our corporate spirit and focus. Anti-democratic propensity has widened our constitutional limitations. With the desire of power, it is possible to create and to abate the interest groups. The persistent views of the leadership of the leadership and the stubbornness of the leadership have resulted in the loss of the organization and the survival of our country. Our institution has gradually expanded the old system of thinking that is led by thinking ability. As a result, the performance of our Growth and Transformation Plan has not reached the desired level of efficiency and efficiency. These problems, above all, are the weaknesses of the highest leadership, the council’s review has been verified, and the executive committee assumes responsibility for the problems and consequences of the collapse. The Council has decided that steps should be taken to ensure that the steps required to ensure accountability are properly and properly implemented” (A statement from the EPRDF Council, EBC Facebook, 30.03.2018).

This part of the message is striking for various of reasons, because it says more than they usually wants. But if I believe it is another matter. Because they have used the force, they have detained and have killed several, dozens and to many citizens to stay in power. They are at the same time proclaiming the people who asking for democracy and freedom, calling them anti-democratic. Not like the EPRDF is really democratic, neither the elections, that has been handpicked man and handpicked parties to run. So the men wished by the Central Government could be Members of Parliament, serve under the EPRDF and the TPLF. Not like Woyane has made progressions in this era. That isn’t a mistake, that is with clear efforts and with meaning to control it all. We know this, because even if opposition critics are drinking coffee in a garden together, they can be detained without any warrants or reason, other than the state are in fear of their voices.

I wonder, how accountable they will be or will review themselves, since they are the initiator and the ones doing the aggression. They are silencing or showing no mercy to dissidents, there is no return if they run to the streets or even start blockades, but if they don’t do that. The Central Government will not see them or care of their existence. Therefore, the only thing they can do, is stay home demonstrations, that even this government has banned with the directions from the Command Post Secretariat.

Hard to believe that the EPRDF will really change or pay amends to the regions of hurt, like Oromia or Amhara. I am saying that, because of what ESAT News reported today: “The twelve member inquiry board formed by the House of People’s Representatives was supposed to travel to Moyale, Southern Ethiopia, on March 25, 2018 and stay in the town for a week. Wazema Radio quoted a member of the inquiry group as saying that they were told by “higher ups” to scrapp their mission. The member of the inquiry board who wish to remain anonymous said they do not exactly know which specific authority has given the order” (Engidu Wolde – ‘Ethiopia: Parliamentary inquiry into Moyale atrocities suspended’ 30.03.2018, ESAT News). So, when the same state talking a fresh start and mistakes. They are not looking to violations and the state sanctioned kilings in Moyale, that led to a civilians fleeing from the area to Kenya. The ruling regime is clearly not taking responsibility for the killings of their own.

That is why, the statement on Facebook is hard to believe and read. That they will review, when they are even scrapping investigation into the killings of Moyale, the state sanctioned massacre. This sort of activity should have consequences, for the ones ordering it and the ones doing it. They shouldn’t walk around in Oromia with the guns, they are merciless killers of innocent citizens.

So with that in mind, it is hard to believe the EPRDF is planning to change it’s efforts. Even stop the State of Emergency, stop the harsh rules and regulations of the measure and also have dialogue with the groups affected by the decision made by Command Post and the EPRDF Council of Ministers.

There are many things, that needs change, but the state is not acting wise if they want to seriously grant the people more than empty hope and gestures. That is shown with the scraping of the misison to investigate in Moyale. We know now, the EPRDF don’t want to be transparent about their misgivings, they can violate the law and make activists into terrorists, but they cannot stand-up and offer change. Unless, the Prime Minister stands up to the Woyane and also the ones “high-up” who controls the affairs.

Since, this is not looking good and make you wonder, if the change of PM Abiy is just a game, the people are the pawns and the TPLF are awaiting their prize. Peace.

Joint Statement of Afar Liberation Front Party (ALFP) and Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) on current Political Situation of Ethiopia (28.03.2018)

 

The Tigray Peoples Liberation Front/ Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (TPLF/ EPRDF) regime of Ethiopia is in a futile attempt to breathe life in to its dying regime. The regime is trying to do everything possible to restore their supremacy destabilised by popular struggle for freedom and democracy. Under auspices of the state of emergency, the regime’s armed forces assassinate, kidnap and mistreat innocent civilians. In an aim to divert the attention of the peoples from the current crises in the country and deter them from continuing wide spread protests, the regime is trying to sow seeds of mistrust among century long lived brotherly nations. It is in our recent memory that the TPLF/ EPRDF has instigated conflict between Oromo and Ogaden Somalis that costed many lives and displaced a million from both sides. The TPLF/ EPRDF regime committed and will continue to commit such heinous crime against humanity on a regular basis. The Afar Liberation Front Party (ALFP) and Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) noted the recent attempt of the EPRDF force camouflaging itself in eastern and northeast border between Oromia and Afar regions in attacking peaceful civilians on both sides. This recent act of TPLF/EPRDF that was witnessed by local peoples is a direct replica of the drama which they were playing to instigate war among other nations and nationalities throughout the country.

Ethiopian regime has been doing every means possible to divide nations and nationalities in Ethiopia to weaken their liberation struggle for freedom, peace and democracy. To execute its diabolical objectives it is using all means to divide and rule. Both ALFP and OLF strongly condemn and vigorously fight all fiendish attempts that target the unity of both peoples. Both organizations reaffirm their commitment to fight any tendency that weakens both people’s unity.

Hence, the ALFP and OLF want to make the Afar, Oromo and other peoples of Ethiopia to be aware of the intended evil plan of TPLF/EPRDF regime. This dying regime is desperate that it cannot refrain itself from doing all kinds of crime to stay in power.

We ask the international community to a pressure upon TPLF/EPRDF regime instead of replicating conflicts to find all-inclusive solution that enable the empowerment of peoples.

Finally, we call the Afar, the Oromo and other peoples of Ethiopia to be vigilant and cooperate in solving peacefully any conflict that the TPLF/EPRDF instigates among them. We also call all political organisations to play a major role in making peoples aware of these anti-brotherly relations of TPLF and struggle in unison to remove this brutal regime from power.

Peace shall prevail!!

ALFP-OLF

28 March 2018

ODF Statement on the election of Dr. Abiy Ahmed as Chairman of Ethiopia’s ruling party (28.03.2018)

Ethiopia: Dr. Abiy Ahmed have a long walk ahead!

A Nation should not be judged by how it treats its highest citizens, but it’s lowest ones”Nelson Mandela

On the 15th February 2018 on National Television, Prime Minister Hailemariam Desalegn resigned as Chairman of Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Defence Force (EPRDF) and also Prime Minister. This happen as sudden swift action, caught many by surprise. Since then the state has re-issued new restrictions and a new State of Emergency, where the state oppress the regions of Oromia and Amhara especially.

Therefore, now after 40 days and long meetings for the Council of Ministers, they have no been able to pick a candidate, the one who become the official chairman of the EPRDF to day is the leader of Oromo People Democratic Organization (OPDO) Dr. Abiy Ahmed. He was elected the chairman of the party, just this 23rd February 2018. So, the rise has gone quickly and seemingly smooth for the 41 year old politician.

Addis Standard reports: “Update: Dr. Abiy Ahmed secured 108 of the 180 and came out the clear winner. The current Deputy PM Demeke Mekonnen, chairman of the ANDM, will remain in his position as deputy Prime Minister” (Addis Standard, 27.03.2018). So we can expect that he stays as deputy in the time coming. So the coalition still has different parties between the various post.

Fana BC Reports: “Addis Ababa, March 27, 2018 (FBC) – The Council of the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) today elected Dr Abiy Ahmed as Chairperson of the Front. Demeke Mekonnen was elected Deputy Chairperson of EPRDF. The Council concluded the meeting it has been conducting since March 20, 2018” (Fana Broadcasting Company – ‘Dr Abiy Ahmed elected Chairperson of EPRDF’, 27.03.2018). What they are saying they needed 7 days or a week to vote for the future Chairman and also Prime Minister. They also waited 33 days before starting to have the Council of Ministers to decide the matter. Therefore, you cannot say the EPDRF isn’t careful and thorough on the matter.

This is not a clean slate, but for some a fig of hope, though I am skeptic, since the EPRDF has been a Woyane and a Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) infused government, where their needs has come first. That is why the oppression, the arrests and the killings has happen on their fields and town. With the sieges and the skirmishes to stop people from protesting the state. Therefore, OPDO chairman and now chairman of EPRDF needs time, but also hope. Because, it is a tricky road ahead. As the Command Post and the army are going-in on the population. Not creating peace, but havoc.

Jawar Mohammed put its very nicely: “Congratulation Dr Abiy Ahmed. You have ascended to the helm of power at the most critical time in the country’s history. To save country from the current dangerous crisis immediate task ahead;

1) Start dialogue with opposition to pave roadmap towards democratic transition immediately

2) Lift the illegal state of emergency

3) Release all political prisoners

4) Reform the security sector to reflect diversity of the country

I wish you Good Luck!” (Jawar Mohammed, 27.03.2018).

This here, what Jawar is writing and wishing for the chairman to focus on reconciliation and not further oppression against the civilians. That is what the state is doing right now, with the detaining of writers, journalists, bloggers, activists and politicians. All political prisoners, as well as the wounded and the killings. That has been all done in the favors of the TPLF. The other parties have idly looked by and let it happen.

So thinks this might settle the score with the oppression and stops the protest. Because the EPRDF have picked a Oromo to be the Chairman. It is nice gesture and token of respect, but the means on the ground, the violations and the hurt is still there. The lack of tolerance and the lack of building bridges is the reason for the outcome these days. That the TPLF is eating and taken advantage, while the other groups are left to play second fiddle.

There has to substantial changes to stop the protests in the regions. The EPRDF has to show signs, like they did in the days ahead of the resignation of the previous Prime Minister. Now, there is nothing, except for his ethnic background. But that will not matter if Oromia are burning and people are fleeing the army, like they have done during the recent 40 days.

There is need for progress and change, swift change, since the government are stifling own citizens and their own voices. This was an internal change and we could see how the new chairman of the EPRDF has gone up the ranks, first in his first party after the resignation and now he has been voted in the coalition too. Dr. Abiy Ahmed, has a long road to walk. This will not be easy, he has many pieces to play and uncertain how he will handle it.

He could be a puppet to the TPLF like his predecessor or his own man. Time will tell, but the protest will not unsubscribe because of his ethnic background, they will stop when the state acts right. Not like now, when it acts wrong.

The trust between the Woyane and where the provinces where the protests are is lacking, but is because of the years of oppression and violence. The TPLF has to understand that, they cannot get away with it and the Oromo will continue to block trade-routes, block oil-transports from Djibouti and so on. To hurt the Central Government, therefore, the new leader need to have dialogue and not send guns to the provinces. There is a need for change of methods and change of ways to handle this. So that all parts can feel involved and take parts of the decisions. Not just one group on top.

Therefore, I fear that Dr. Abiy Ahmed might just be a new puppet. But I hope I am wrong. Peace.