on Ethiopia is simply
Unfounded Allegation with no merit
Yohannes Gebresellasie (Ph.D) Canada
Article 17 of the Treaty of Wuchale was a major cause for the battle of Adwa over a hunched year back. Fascist Italia wanted to impose its will power and authority over a sovereign nation: Ethiopia by deliberately and deceptively changing the meaning of the article to suit its intention of interference over the internal affairs of our nation. The Ethiopian people said NO to fascist Italy’s intervention and racist colonial mentality and fought its colonial aggression and drove-out Fascist Italy to where it belonged. By doing so, Ethiopia became a symbol of liberty and freedom to all African people and indeed to the black race. Over a hundred years now, few individuals, groups, governmental and non-governmental institution alike have started to repeat their perennial manifestation of neo-colonial mentality over developing nations like ours simply to galvanize people into false and dangerous assumption and activity by imposing pessimist, exaggerated and dishonest and completely miss-leading, and extremely dangerous representation of a situation emanated from their wrong, negative and loosen perspective of economy of ideas.
In our era of 21st century, these foreign self-authorized institutions fashioned with flashy and attractive names such as the Civil Military Fusion Centre (CFC), the International Crisis Group (ICG) and the like supported by few individuals and groups such as Ana Gomez, Brhanu Nega, the OLF, ONLF, Shabia and few other united forces of destruction who hate to see the socio-economic and political progress of this nation and because they are threatened by what they are seeing, they are using tax-payers money to discredit and defame our nation from their sanctuary way far away from our territory. They even go far beyond their limit to wage armed-struggle via the internet using opposition media outlets such as the VOA, Deutsche-Welle the Amharic service etc. Further, these self-authorized institutions such as those already mentioned have started triggering chaos and violence in developing nations like ours via their so called country report, country analysis etc. simply to impose their hidden agendas. Whereas they are enjoying peace and stability in peaceful territories and whereas they are using tax-payers money to live in a luxurious condos and villas out there, they want to transcend chaos, anarchy and lawlessness from whence they live into our backyard here. As the saying goes “You can full some people some times but you can’t full all people all of the time.” We say No to these individuals, groups and/or governmental and non-governmental institutions alike and we are saying please give us a break and please mind your own business; there, where you belong.
For example, the self authorized institution by the name CFC in its current report entitled Ethiopia country page issue No. 1,130 October 2009 puts a plethora of fabrications and innuendos it claims to know about Ethiopian national elections. On this so called report if in fact one can call that a report, it has further listed a plethora of false and dangerous pre-conceived conclusions and recommendations vis-à-vis the upcoming forth Ethiopian National election. However, what we see on this so called country report is simply forecasting a pre-meditated, pre-fabricated false and dangerous precedence by triggering violence prior to the upcoming national election. Like the Fascist Italy tried to impose its authority on a sovereign nation long time ago, CFC is also trying to suggest and impose the kind of government and the kind of a leader we should decide to choose or not choose. We said No to Fascist Italy’s aggression and imposition of its will power then and we are now saying No to CFC’s current mediocre report. Further, CFC has no authority to even suggest or recommend what is good or what is bad for us. We as a people are champions of our destiny and we as a people are capable enough to do our homework depending solely upon ourselves. We have always been so and we shall always be so in the future. So we are telling CFC to simply ignore and put its biased, uninformed and unprofessional so called country reports on the back burner or keep it for its own perusal. CFC on this report tries to suggest a form of government suited to us because it thinks we have no capacity, intelligence and experience to choose what is good for us. This is simply an insult upon the intelligence, pride and dignity of the Ethiopian people; therefore, we say this report is not worth reading; it is rather a trash that should be thrown into a garbage can. This so called CFC report even goes beyond its limit as to comment on what our leader should or should not be or should or should not do prior to the upcoming national election. One wonders what authority CFC possesses to comment on a democratically elected leader of a sovereign nation that CFC does not even belong. As for CFC’s perusal however, the leader it is pointing its fingers upon and commenting towards happens to be the brightest African leaders with a tested and with a high caliber leadership quality and background. The leadership this leader manifested at the G8, G20, The China-Africa Summit and many others and that he will be manifesting on the upcoming environmental summit to be held at Copenhagen, Denmark representing the whole continent of Africa is a living demonstration of his talent and skilled leadership acknowledged even at the back yard of the CFC office itself. Therefore, again we are telling CFC to please save your comments to yourself and mind your non business and to please leave us alone and give us a break for we do not need your recommendation in our era of 21st century. Further, we are saying that we as Nations, Nationalities and Peoples of Ethiopia know and we are quite capable to decide the form of government that suits our people and to choose the leader we want; so we say again please do not mess- up with the way we do business.
The Ethiopian people waged a very hard fight for a very long period of time to do away with authoritarian and dictatorial regimes and leaders and as a result, peace and stability has been maintained, democratization and good-governance has taken place and law and order has been established in this country. Further, an independent justice system and the office of the Human Rights and the Ombudsman have been established to safeguard the constitutional rights of the Ethiopian people. Ethiopians have enjoyed freedom of speech, expression, movement and so on and all that has been guaranteed by the highest law of the land: The Ethiopian Constitution. Unlike CFC position on Ethiopian Federalism, Ethiopians from coast to coast are treated equally despite differences in language, religion, culture etc. Those differences are the beauty of our people and are the wealth and cultural pride of Ethiopia demonstrating unity in diversity within this nation. That is because unlike CFC opinion, Federalism within the Ethiopian context is a unifying factor and not a divisive factor. Therefore, CFC has to simply come here, learn the Ethiopian culture and history to notice such a phenomenon experience instead of depending upon unfounded and unrealistic opinions on Ethiopia from among others inherent enemies of this country. CFC does not seem to comprehend that over 85% of Ethiopians live in the rural areas and the strong hold of the current government is the support it enjoys from rural areas where agriculture is the dominant livelihood. Therefore CFC’s comment saying the government is unpopular is simply non-sense because the figures show otherwise and CFC is welcomed to learn from the primary sources, the farmers themselves and not disillusioned enemies of this nation such as the one and only “Colonial Viceroy” Ana Gomez, the ICG and few disenchanted anti-Ethiopia groups scattered here and there spreading confusion and hostility from their sanctuary using tax-payers money.
CFC’s another comment suggests that there is no good political climate in Ethiopia and further suggests it will even be worst for the upcoming national election. Well, we say CFC please better look at facts and figures before forecasting blind prediction that triggers violence. Contrary to CFC’s suggestion, there has always been a very conducive political climate in this country since this government came to power. Here in Ethiopia, three national elections were held since the current government came to power. For a country with no history of a free, fair and democratic election, in fact with no history of a real election at all, it can be argued that the country has made a land mark achievement. Although like many developing democracies there have been few technical drawbacks from the previous elections, nonetheless and by and large the outcome of the last three national elections can be concluded as free and fair. This assumption has also been concluded by a well known independent international institution such as the renowned Carter Center. The renowned Carter Center concluded that the last Ethiopian election (The third national election) has been by and large free and fair. Also despite its biased unfair and prejudiced reaction towards the Ethiopian election, even the EU/EOM observes fully concluded with the assessment of the renowned Carter Center. The EU/EOM has to say the following regarding the May 15 third Ethiopian national Election: “The decision by the government of Ethiopia and EPRDF to launch this electoral process with international observation and unprecedented openness was a courageous and bold move.”
Another misinformed report of CFC is on Ethiopia Federalism. This seems to be a direct replica of ICG’s and Ana Gomez’s report. In fact it is done deliberately way prior to the upcoming national election in order to satisfy the hidden agenda of CFC itself on the one hand and, its friends and colleagues such as OLF, ONLF, the Genbot 7 and Ana Gomez on the other. No wonder all the sources CFC referred are non-other but the same individuals and groups mentioned above. It is simply a joke emanated from these groups or these unions of destructive forces who spend most of their time and energy defaming our nation, discrediting our constitution and affecting our national pride to be the main actors upon which CFC bases its primary sources to collect its so called evidence. The combinations of the above groups are doing what they are doing simply and solely to fulfill their hidden agendas by triggering violence prior to the upcoming national election. We say NO to these people and their activities as well. As for CFC’s comment on the above groups having no alternative but to consider armed straggle as the only option in the absence of political representation is totally ridiculous because the alternative is clear and net and that is for them to denounce violence and advance their political ambition using peaceful and democratic ways and means and to do that, they have been called upon time and time again.
The Ethiopian people know quite well whom to choose and what to choose. They have done it before by saying NO to all foreign intervention and interference on their rights and responsibilities and that includes national elections. Again, they will say no to foreign conspiracies and interferences that interrupt the hard fought peace, stability and development endeavors in this country. It is true that democratic good governance and electoral processes and procedures are a new phenomenon in this country because prior to this government there was simply none of that kind. Therefore, Ethiopia has to learn from its own mistakes and the mistakes of other democratic nations to enhance those fundamental norms, standards and values the country takes very seriously and very deeply. Even those leading democracies such as the United States, United Kingdom, Canada, France etc. have not yet been free of any electoral miss-conducts and they too are not without electoral discrepancies and draw-backs. Generally speaking, even in those countries with many years of experience in democratization and good governance electoral mistakes happen. However when disputes, difficulties and discrepancies occur, they always opt for a peaceful and democratic ways and means to resolve and settle their differences and not, as suggested by CFC, rely upon violence. As a result, all parties must at all time refrain from advocating and triggering violence; CFC should learn a lesson or two from that.
During the last decade, Ethiopia has made progress on the use of its human as well as natural resources. As a result, the country has been able to achieve a double digit economic growth almost yearly. For example, Ethiopia’s economy has grown on average by 10% uninterruptedly over the last five years. The progress made in the field of education, health, agriculture, transportation, construction etc. is arguably the best in sub- Saharan Africa. Ethiopia’s progress in the filed of hydro-power is only second in Africa. Hydro-power generating Dams such as Gelgel-Gibe I, Gelgel-Gibe II, Gelgel-Gibe III and Tekeze and Tanabeles are excellent examples of the achievement this country has made over the last few years since this government came to power. However, few international media outlets, assessments, reports and evaluations vis-à-vis the achievement of developing nations like Ethiopia has been not only unfair but indeed biased, unrealistic, negative and discouraging least to say. CFC’s so called report on Ethiopia demonstrates exactly that. The recent CFC’s so called country report is a clear expression of a biased and unfounded report. It is therefore a preposterous postulation of the facts on the ground. It is simply a hypothesis stemmed from un-researched or semi-researched mediocre reporting mechanism. Therefore, it does not have any scientific or realistic base and thus, it does not merit any attention what so ever. Further, CFC’s report basis its source from among others the ICG’s report on “Ethnic federalism and its discontents.” ICG’s allegation like that of CFC’s report has simply emanated from a shallow, unprofessional, elementary and mediocre data collection mechanism way behind and with no reference or adherence to the most basic and fundamental requirement of any report writing procedures. Like CFC’s report, it simply jumps to a biased, hypothetical and blind conclusions and recommendations without using the most fundamental reporting methods and reporting skills. Therefore, CFC’s recent report is not only biased, unrealistic and unfounded but indeed a case that truly questions the mere credibility of the so called self authorized institution: the CFC itself; therefore, no serious individual, group or institution should take reference from CFC’s recent provocative and violence triggering report on Ethiopian Federalism and on the upcoming Ethiopian National election seriously.
The other major reference for CFC’s report is none other but Ana Gomez herself. The EU Mission led by Ana Gomez saw millions of Ethiopians going out in an unparalleled way to all polling stations in the capital city and all over the country on may the 15th and waiting in cues from early morning to the finishing time in order to exercise their rights only for the third time in the history of this nation. They saw the electoral board conducting its duties and responsibilities unbiased, impartial and with supreme integrity and efficiency. The EU Mission led by Ana Gomez did not seem to have any problem with the process either except praising it. The EU saw open debates of all parties and free access to all governmental media and the EU did not seem to have any problem with that as well. The EU saw some discrepancies during the electoral proceedings as can happen in any electoral proceedings anywhere. However, the Electoral Board took quick corrective measures and all were resolved right at the spot and through re-run processes. The EU acknowledged that measures were taken in accordance with the terms of references agreed by all contesting parties and yet, the opposition continued with their strategy of win it all by any means including violence but the EU never tried to comment on the oppositions’ wrong and illegal activities. Instead, it showed its alignment with the opposition’s activities by keeping silent and accusing the ruling party for whatever it does or does not do. The EU’s bias and impartiality did not stop there however. After the Addis election was won by the CUD and before the nation wide results were announced, its observer Mission informed the opposition parties way in advance and before the results is out that they have won the election nationally. This of course was wrong and illegal. The opposition then felt that it was time to conduct rose, orange or tulip revolutions and the unfortunate clashes that took place at the beginning of June were the result of such irresponsible action triggered by Ana Gomez. The CFC report has made this lady as its main reference to write a country report on Ethiopia; what a shame!
The Ethiopian people have been denied of their fundamental human rights including the right to elect or be elected for generations. It was only during this current government that the Ethiopian people got the chance to cast their votes for the candidates of their choice for the third time now and soon they will do that for the forth time. This fundamental right was violated during the previous regimes. It is obvious therefore, that democratization, good governance and the rule of law are for the first time flourishing in Ethiopia, thanks to the bold initiative of the current government. Over the years, the Ethiopian people have understood the significance of their fundamental democratic right: The right to elect and to be elected. This fundamental right has been entrenched within the highest law of the land: articles 38 of the Ethiopian constitution. This fundamental democratic right was non-existent prior to the current government coming to power. Within a very short time the Ethiopian people have conducted three elections and the Ethiopian people have shown maturity and tolerance from time to time and it is hoped that during the upcoming forth national election the Ethiopian people will manifest even greater wisdom, maturity and tolerance and the forth national election it is hoped will even be a better organized and a better implemented. For that, peace and dialogue must be the order of the day. International Governmental and non governmental institutions such as the CFC, ICG and the like must preach peace not hate, dialogue not violence and use their experience and expertise when they are asked to advocate unity and not division, anarchy and lawlessness. They should also take a time or two to learn about the socio economic, political and cultural background of a given country thoroughly before they come up with a premeditated and unrealistic report such as the recent CFC’s report on Ethiopia.
Finally, Ethiopia is on the right track towards democratization good governance and sustainable development and the record is there for anyone’s perusal. There is no reason the government changes this trend or this approach because it is following the right approach. CFC’s confusion to associate authoritarianism with federalism within the Ethiopian context is a manifestation of shallow comprehension of both terms. Both have different interpretation and both are non-complementary. The former does not exist in Ethiopia because we are done with it long time ago and the later Ethiopian Federalism is in simple words a working formula that brings unity in diversity and where all languages, customs, religions are treated equally. That is well and alive in Ethiopia. Therefore the political climate in Ethiopia is peaceful, stable and even more promising unlike CFC’s recent mediocre report.