A government above the law
W.Yilma October, 28/2020
In Ethiopia it becomes a daily routine for many to see mass deaths, arbitrary arrests, illegal evictions, and inflicting psychological trauma to innocent people, due to the widespread injustice and deliberate criminal acts of the government in power. We Ethiopians as a people show tolerance to all of these kinds of wrong doings even though we know it is morally, religiously and legally crime against humanity. It shows how we Ethiopians become insensitive to the suffering of others, which is a sign of deviation from basic acceptable social norms. It becomes vivid that, organizing, Promoting, fabricating and facilitating crimes of various types is a daily business for the illegal government in power, led by the warlord Abiy Ahmad Ali. My intention here is not to show all those crimes committed daily under the order of the warlord Abiy and his criminal associates, but to raise few important issues and to express my great concerns.
1. Do nothing approaches of the government during natural disaster. As we know, some parts of the country, under the ex-prime minster Abiy’s watch, desert locust swarms have inflicted huge damage to agricultural lands. Almost all the affected areas are occupied by poor farmers under which their livelihood is entirely depends on subsistence farming system. As a result of this their crops and other green plants are partially or destroyed by desert locust infestation. Because there is no early warning system and preparedness program in place under Abiy administration or any kind of policy that could support the farming communities, the damages caused by the locust swarms become out of control in some part of the country. In general, the disaster management system by the government to handle this issue is below expectation. It is painful for many Ethiopians to see poor farmers pleas, but with no avail; hopelessness, but without any help; and welling of tears in their faces but with no measure taken to stop them crying. According to FAO desert locust information service, 2015, 1-kilometer square size of locust swarm (which contain around 40 million of locust) can consume the same amount of food in one day as about 35,000 people. This data can give us a hint to what extent the locust swarm can cause damages on crops, and the number of farmers who are faces the danger of starvation. It is sad to see helpless people are fighting in primitive way with outnumbered locust swarm colonies flying over their head. This scenario shows not the weakness of the people to fight the locust swarms, but the failure of the government in Arat-Killo unable to discharge its duties. According to the regional state of Tigray, the Abiy administration has deliberately blocked to deliver all necessary assistance to fight the desert locust swarms in the regional state.
Abiy administration criminality towards the people of Tigray is not limited only because of he is unwilling to send necessary supports (including airplane to spray pesticide), but also for the losses of crops, grazing pastures and deforestation as a result of inaction against the locust invasion on time; for not passing information about the movements of the locust swarm to the regional state; exposing the public to COVID-19 infection due to congregation of the people to help the poor farmers in fighting the locust with traditional methods; the economic losses incurred to the regional states as well as to the general public who participated to combat the locust; the risks of exposing to pesticides both to the public (due to inadequate personal protective equipment) as well as to the livestock population for the possible improper usages of pesticides in such kind of an emergency situation; the impacts of pesticides to aquatic, as well as in- land useful insects and other animal species such as fish birds and bees population; for creating a conducive atmosphere for the locus to continue its reproduction cycle because of delayed action to kill the locust before laying eggs etc… The more the central government has delayed or ignored to take appropriate actions in timely manner, the greater the damages of the locust to socio-economic activities of the country.
As if Tigray, and other parts of Ethiopians poor farmers are not seriously affected by locust swarms, and they have the same feeling as their Amhara counterparts, the medias both government as well as the private own, and the “minsters” and other “experts” are talking only about Amhara farmers who are affected by desert locust. Besides, during this critical time where the locust swarm is actively spreading in many parts of the country, the government officials are talking about theory how to combat the locust, as if the poor farmers are interested to listen their empty technical lectures. What the poor farmers need is tangible actions, no ifs and or buts! Or visiting by the ex-prime minster the locust affected area in Wollo after the poor farmers has lost their crops is shedding a crocodile tear neither help the farmers nor improve the reputation of Abiy and Temesgen.
It is unhidden truth that many of the international organizations, and their agencies has passed the information and warned the possible locust swarm infestation to government officials, including the ex-prime minster Abiy some 8 or 6 months ago. Some said that available funds were also donated from various organizations (earmarked) to fight the likely locust invasion. My question here is, even if the international organizations are not aware of the Ethiopian government officials about the possible invasion of locust, is it not the ministry of agriculture responsibility to conduct surveillance activities and prepare to take necessary measures whenever this kind of problem arises? This is quite simple to handle before the locust causes such significant damages to crop, grasses, and trees. The only thing what are needed are allocation of trained manpower, finance, transportation, equipment’s, and pesticides in strategically important areas.
For how long our officials are immune and get away with crimes they committed without any accountabilities? This show to what extent the illegal groups in Arat Killo are promoting one person and one group interests and determined to divide Ethiopians badly by denying equal services to the communities to control the locust invasions which have transboundary nature. If this is not considered as crime against humanity what other terminology is fit to explain “crime against humanity”? It is time consuming to mention her the crimes committed by Abiy administration since he came to power against Ethiopians, against the people of Tigray. Regarding locust issue, let me add here two things:
1.1 Abiy and his cohorts are denied the farmers in Tigray to get equal services and supports the same way as their neighbors’ the Amhara farmers has got to control the locust swarms. As if locust respects the boundaries between Tigray and Amhara regional states, and more importantly as if the people of Tigray are not an Ethiopians, the plain sent by the federal government to Amhara region, Wollo to spray pesticides against the desert locust swarm denied to do the same on the side of Tigray. It is an international obligation to fight cross bordering pest regardless of boundary, politics, or race. Violating this principle is a crime against humanity. Therefore, the Tigray regional state should send letters to the world communities, organizations, and institutions to take appropriate measures. Regarding locust, Abiy failures not only put Tigray at risk, but also other Ethiopians and neighboring countries, because transboundary pests or diseases are not respecting man-made boundaries.
1.2. Some 6 months ago, Tegarus and their friends living abroad has purchased Drones and send it to Tigray through Addis Ababa airport with the aim to fight the possible swarms of locust. Unfortunately, until now the customs service security at the airport under Abiy order has confiscated the drone and unwilling to handover to Tigray regional state. If these drones had been in Tigray, it would have been used to fight the locust infestations. How many farmers plot would have been protected from the locust if the drone had been released from the customs service at the airport? As I heard from other source, one Tigrawai investor has purchased two small Airplanes, with spare parts and other equipment’s from Addis Abeba for the purpose of establishing aviation training center In Tigray. But the same as the confiscated Drones, the security service at Bolle Airport do not allow the owner to take the purchased Airplanes to Tigray. These small planes could be used to fight the locust if they would have been transported to Tigray at this crucial time. These two incidences clearly show the cruelty and determination of Abiy and his cohorts to harm the people of Tigray.
2. Total Failure of Grand Ethiopian Renaissance Dam politics. As we know why Ethiopia has started to build this dam and how we are going to build it was clear for many Ethiopians, including Prosperity Gospel Party members who are illegally extended to stay in their power! It is solely Ethiopian people’s project and, hence no one have the right, including the now ex-prime minster to decide the fate of this dam with any foreign entity. Unfortunately, since Abiy came to power the first project he undermined and opened propaganda against it is the GERD. Besides, he is the first person who nominated and assigned as his advisors those who are venomously opposing the construction of the dam. To make things worse the chief and dedicated engineer of the dam, Semengew Bekele was assassinated in day light. It is Abiy who become one of the first person, secretly making a deal with foreigners in which many of them are adamantly opposing the construction of the dam. The United State of America, Donald Trump made it clear in his recent discussions with Sudanese counterparts and exposed Abiy’s intentions to compromise Ethiopian interest to satisfy our adversaries’ geo-political interest. To confirm this fact, reading Ethiopian foreign policy adopted under Abiy’s administration gives a clear idea to what extents Ethiopia’s national security interest is under threat. According to Abiy’s unhealthy mind set, Ethiopia is a threat to her neighbors, while her neighbors are a true friend of Ethiopia. Therefore, by compromising our interests, we must work to satisfy the interests of foreign countries, including our adversaries. As a result of this GERD should either reduce its capacity or stop completely for the interest of Egypt. Similarly, we must allow, the most brutal and number one enemy of Ethiopians, Isayas Afewerki to mingled in the internal affairs of our country. It is an open secret, that Abiy is working toward opening of all doors to foreign agents as long as they give him support to stay in power illegally. If we do not agree to call this an act of a treason in what subject, we Ethiopian will agreed upon? Should we let our country in havoc by not agreed on this clear act of crime committed by our officials? The choices are in our hands, either to survive as a unified country or the other way round! Instead of blaming Donald Trump we should blame ourselves for letting Abiy to do whatever he wants without any control mechanism.
3. Lack of safe place to live. As we know, under the ex-prime minster watch, thousands of Ethiopians were killed, and evicted from various places where they lived for decades, and their property was looted, destroyed, or confiscated by local warlords. This incidence does not abate yet, and many more innocent peoples are killing daily, and watching of peoples bury in mass graves is heartbreaking. Although government officials are reluctant to admit the truth, the fact of the matter is many of those massacred belongs to one ethnic group. What is important but incredibly sad to mention here is that many of the systemic killings were organized, financed, orchestrated, and executed by government officials of various levels and their agents. But to divert the attentions, Abiy always accusing those who are not part of these crimes. Under Abiy watch, government media outlets are openly busy in targeting and promoting hate against specific social groups, but ignoring to talk about those killings, torturing’s, and evicting from their places. Not only this the government of Abiy is financing in millions the” private” media outlets, in which some of them openly advocating genocide against specific social groups. As if sponsoring of those killers are not enough, using taxpayer money to fund those private media outlets, promoting hate propaganda against innocent people is another atrocious crime against humanity.
4. Tana lake and hyacinth weed. It is almost 5 years from now in which one of the main sources of Nile river, Lake Tana was infested by water hyacinth (Imboch) and now it is near to cover the entire water surface of the lake. The reproduction rate of this plant is extremely high and since its appearances, the measure taken to control this weed plant is not only unsuccessful but also wasting of time, manpower, and resources. As a result of this, the socio-economics impacts, which includes, tourism, environmental, and imbalance of the aquatic ecology is beyond financial calculations. I wrote regarding this issue some years ago and it is not my intention to repeat here again (A hyacinth weeds plant “Imboch” that invades Lake Tana). What I understood from media outlets is that the problem is still exists and the weed plant has resisted for all kinds of unscientific eradication measures taken so far. But to me what is worrisome is until now no one take responsibilities both at local, zonal, regional and at federal levels for the damages caused by this weed plant to the lake, and its environs. To me this case is easy to investigate and to identify who should be accountable for not taking appropriate measures during the initial stage of the weed plant appearance on the lake. Because there are offices and experts assigned to handle professionally this kind of issues when it arises with clear missions and job descriptions. But in Ethiopia criminal justice system, as well as in civil administrative systems, causing damages of this kind (which have public goods in nature) by any agencies to natural resources are not considered as a crime. What is more disturbing is that instead of addressing the hyacinth plant, the Amhara regional state officials are busy in playing dirty political game with Abiy and his buddy Isayas to destabilize our country. Amhara regional state is a playground for Eritrean security and military personnel. At this time this poor country has allocated over 96 million birr what officials said is to clear the water Hyacinth.
5. The Abiy government has denied sending the Safety Net funds to Tigray regional state. This program is funded by international financial and humanitarian institutions to help those needy people who lives under extreme poverty. This program has clear and specific objective, which is to enable the poor to feed themselves by participating in various development programs.
6. Except Tigray Abiy administration distributed face masks to all students throughout Ethiopia, but denied to do the same for Tigray children.
7. The Sport Commission of Ethiopia has circulated a letter to deny Tigray clubs from participating in all sports competitions held both domestically and internationally. This action taken by Abiy administration reminds me the Berlin Olympic held in 1936, when Adolf Hitler did shun the black American athlete victory; the action of Hitler to deny Jewish communities from participating in social, and economic activities.
8. Systematically, with the consultation of his boss, Isayas, Abiy Ahmad Ali has decided to move the Northern military command from Tigray to Bahirdar with the aim to prepare fertile grounds to Isayas to invade Tigray. The decision made by Tigray Regional State regarding this issue is correct if not delayed. Abiy intention is to consolidate military power to himself and to his groups so that together with the Eritrean dictatorial regime to impose his will on those who are opposing his regime.
Looking to all these and other crimes committed by Abiy administration, we can conclude that Ethiopia is under monsters lead by morally and spiritually corrupted and unfit individuals. It is in Ethiopia where the world is seeing a self-proclaimed prime minster is driving a kid’s car in recreation area as if nothing has happened in his back yard, while his country’s poor farmers are fighting with their bare hand against the desert locust. During this difficult time, Abiy was visited green areas by inviting the most brutal and terrorist sponsor person in eastern Africa, and one of the ardent enemies of Ethiopian unity Isayas Afewerki of Eritrea. Instead of providing airplanes to combat the locust swarm, he is actively engaged in treasons by allowing Isayas to visit the Ethiopian Air force campus, and METEC, arms and machinery industries, what should be a secret military establishment for the person like Isayas. It shows to what extents Abiy is undermining both the people of Ethiopia and in particular the military personnel’s who have the responsibility to take actions when their country is in real danger as a result of unfit and irresponsible “commander in chief “abusing his power. Which one should be a primary? Asking Isayas where about the Ethiopian hero, colonel Bezabeh Petros or like “Galemota” opening the door to Isayas to visit our military establishments, and GERD in which he venomously hates the most? For Abiy it is better to let Ethiopia to disintegrate rather than losing his friendship with Isayas Afewerki.
We discussed more than enough about the relationships between Abiy and Isayas. Because of their relationship is too secretive and full of conspiracies, they are fabricated false information to divert the attention of the public. One of this fallacy is the narratives that it is TPLF who started the May 1998 Bademe war. For those Prosperity Party officials who want to betray the Ethiopian public just to achieve their short-term political objectives by collaboration with Isayas, they should understand that they are committed inexcusable crimes against those Ethiopians who sacrifice their dearly life for the sake of their country. Leave alone we Ethiopians, the Eritreans including Isayas himself knew who started the war. Anybody can read the border commissions decisions document, which indicate that it is the Eritrean government who started the Bademe war, and for this the border commission penalized the Eritrea regime to pay nearly ten million dollars to the Ethiopia government. Although I am against the deportation in both sides in particular from Ethiopian side (because of our place in history to exist as a nation), it is Isayas who started to deport thousands of Ethiopians (even children’s, born from Ethiopian mothers) before and after the start of the Bademe war. Besides, after the war ended, Ethiopia has allowed those Eritreans deportees to come back to Ethiopia to reclaim their properties. Taking advantage of this decree, almost most of them got their properties back, although no similar actions were taken by Isayas regime.
Finally, Ethiopia at this time is at crossroad, and as time passed by, the situation is worsening. I do think Ethiopia is in the hands of those individuals who does not have any clue how to run government offices. Abiy do not have the capacity to understand the current complex geo-political, social, cultural, and economic situation of eastern Africa and the world in general. I can say with certainty that Abiy will not sit down with other political stake holders to solve the problems our country is facing today. I came to this conclusion from what I see from day-to day activities of Abiy and his cohorts. We Ethiopians have one option to save our country from disaster. This option is to unite regardless of our political differences. United we stand, divided we fall!