Amen Teferi 05-18-17
In anticipation of the forthcoming 26th anniversary May 28 I tried to assess the path that has led us to where we are now. Now, we are in a situation that requires critical thinking and courageous spirit. In my view, from among a number of monstrous events that we have so far encountered and strived to grappling with, the predicament we had faced last year was a most serious one.
Our latest predicament really requires both the temperament and resilience of democratic citizens who are endowed with the cleaver insight of an intelligent politician who can work unperturbed under the daunting influences of the ever changing circumstances that could even defy the judgments of an experienced public administrator.
EPRDF has shown admirable qualities of sensibility and managed to display the composure of a seasoned political organization in handling the difficult matters. As we saw recently many things were conspiring against the ruling party, pushing it increasingly into the tight-spots. Coping up with these soul-searching predicaments, EPRDF has tried to fully grasp the kernel of the matter that deeply concerns our nation and its people by way of scrutinizing its performances over the last 15 years and finally came-up with a suitable solution that would surly address the legitimate grievances of the public.
We are still witnessing that Ethiopia is boldly journeying to democracy and prosperity and it has now reached at a place where it can see a bright light at the end of the tunnel - a tunnel dug by the iron fingers of poverty. This tunnel is blindingly dark and it can only be lighted with flames of an undefeatable spirit of a visionary leader who has the knack to dispel the intricacy of structurally embedded poverty that must again be combined with an indefatigable determination to tread on the arduous path of development. As it managed to surpassingly overcome the difficulties, EPRDF has proved itself to be an indefatigable party that can stir the boat of renaissance.
EPRDF is the father of Ethiopian democracy. Recently EPRDF’s government has taken an unprecedented move and show enthusiastic readiness to support democratic institutions. It has also shown good gesture to media practitioners and institutions operating without being defiant to professional ethics and compromising the rule of law.
The media is encouraged to seek, impart and disseminate information that would expose illicit actions and ensure accountability and good governance. The government vowed to promote investigative journalism and guarantee the full implementation of the freedom of information Act.
Similarly, it has committed itself to dispel the preponderance of rent-seeking orientations and practices to ensure the supremacy of developmental political economy. The government also determined to dry-out the quagmire that would allow rent-seeking ideologies and tendencies to thrive. Redoubling effort in this regard would push aside the major obstacle in the journey to our renaissance.
The government has also shown its resolve in strengthening the multi-party democracy. This could be substantiated by the recently organized “all-party” platform. The ruling party has understood that excessive adversarial politics would tarnish and spoil the common mission of any political community. Adversarial politics is said to create the right conditions for effective scrutiny of the government, and for genuine debate.
However, as we have witness in the past, when political adversaries are blindly engaged in an unbridled powers struggle driven by zero sum-game principle it would lead the democratic system to crisis. In view of curbing this political culture EPRDF has shown willingness to engage itself in genuine consultation with opposition parties.
The joint forum is established to promote close working relationships among political parties. This forum also serves as a catalyst to improve the culture of adversarial politics without undermining the core values of a democratic system. This platform has put in place a mechanism that could facilitate consultations between the government and opposition parties on every major national issue. Moreover, it also aimed to strengthen political participations of citizens to promote deliberative democracy.
The government believes that the current rapid economic development and our surefooted unity are the result of the federal democratic constitutional arrangement that recognize the full diversity of the nation. Ethiopia’s sustained, accelerated and inclusive double-digit growth is in fact the fruit of the genuine democratic system it has launched two decades ago and the need to deepen our democracy still exist.
Now, deepening our democracy is a serious matter that assumes a gravity of life and death. The government that has launched such a huge project like the GTP really needs to have committed and law abiding public servants and officials who have the gut to uphold the public interest over and above their selfish agendas. The ruling party does not need spineless camp followers who would sell their political oath short.
Notwithstanding to the fact that we have cumbersome tasks to straighten the cultural setbacks and to unknot the meshes of backwardness we have to take decisive steps in deepening our democracy and ensuring the sovereignty of our people through an ever increasing popular participation.
The ruling party EPRDF has engaged itself in self-scrutiny platforms and identified various shortcomings that it claimed could deplete the democratic and constitutional system. It has reaffirmed its position and expressed its resolution to address the identified shortcomings.
The party has duly acknowledged the malaise effect of rent-seeking activities that are rampant in the urban areas, which it perceived as acute problem that damage its political, social and economic agendas. It has made it clear that rent-seeking and corruption are its most avid nemesis and if left unheeded it will lacerates and frustrates its health and existence as a party.
Rent seeking practices and corruptions will in fact pull the rug from under its feet and hamper the economic growth and foster inequality as well. Therefore, it has vowed to recharge its batteries and keeps the going. The future is bright with EPRDF.