By Gebre-Kirstos Abbay
24th April 2019
The young charismatic leader Prime Minister Doctor Abiy Ahmed celebrated his first anniversary a few weeks ago. Ethiopians all over the world welcomed his leadership as soon as they listened, his first inauguration speech to the parliament. He mentioned the word Ethiopia many times which has been ignored by predecessor EPRDF leaders, namely the late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi and Ato Hailemariam Desalegne. The majority of the people of Ethiopia inland and in exile were delighted to see embracing Prime Minister from the totalitarian regime, TPLF led government.
Despite the fact that opposition parties always have anti-government agenda, they were also in limbo not to be an obstacle for such an optimistic leader. Prime Minister Abiy has taken amazing formidable decisions that could not be dreamt at the presence of Ethiopian Peoples’ Democratic Liberation Front (EPRDF) leadership. He released all political prisoners, journalists that have been considered as terrorists, University students, social media activists and other victims that have been jailed for life with unfounded reasons. Not only this but also, he took the courageous initiative to restore peace and harmony between The Governments of Ethiopia and Eritrea.
The border dispute of Badme in 1998-9 claimed over one hundred thousand innocent lives on both sides. The amount of money lost for armaments and logistics was severely high for the two poor nations. Since then even though there was no war, the area was under intense pressure for both the peoples who reside in the vicinity. The Government of late Prime Minister Meles Zenawi gained not only military supremacy but also managed to propagate smear campaign against President Isaias Afeworki.
Regrettable two and half decades have passed that hindered the socio-economic development of these developing nations. The new Prime Minister Doctor Abiy has thoroughly understood the unnecessary enemy rhetoric that has been fabricated to divide the two nations. Doctor Abiy also opened doors to those who fled their country in fear of persecution, torture and jail sentence, to return to their life without any interrogation.
Even those freedom fighters that were determined to overthrow Woyane led government of Ethiopia by armed struggle were invited to return home and to participate in the new reform peacefully. Among these were Ginbot 7, Movement for Justice, Freedom and Democracy, and OLF (Oromo Liberation Front).
The People of Ethiopia applauded the young Prime Minister for his wisdom and decisive measures. Nonetheless, there were also wicked faces that have lost power and economically disadvantaged people due to the reform of the new Prime Minister, mainly the ethnic affiliated Woyane (Tigray People’s Liberation Front) and their allies. Most of the key positions have been controlled by them and they were involved in various corruption networks and money laundering business. According to Global Financial Integrity, Ethiopia lost over US$16.5 billion dollars from 2001 to 2010 smuggled from the country illegally, and the major actors were believed to be Woyane groups.
Woyane authorities knew that they have been committing a crime against humanity in the past twenty-seven years, and the atmosphere of the reform didn’t seem to offer them security guarantee for their peaceful survival. The power and authority they had, suddenly evaporated before their eyes, and those who were claiming their lives were invited to return home as political oppositions. Having realized that all the suspecting authorities who had key positions rushed and barracked in Mekele, capital of Tigray which is their native place. Moreover, they have recruited, trained and deployed over sixty thousand well-armed militias, ready to confront if any adversary is observed.
These high officials include Sebhat Nega, Abbay Tsehaye, Seyoum Mesfin, and Getachew Asefa, the head of the security agency who was responsible for the kidnap, torture, and death of innocent citizens. There is immense evidence that these officials took many millions of local and International hard currencies prior to their departure. They have used this money to create instability in various parts of the country and to destruct the rapid pace of the reform.
TPLF Woyane indirectly employed Daud Ibsa who is the leader of OLF (Oromo Liberation Front) at the town of Zalanbessa on the way home from Eritrea, to carry out numerous anti-peace and instability actions, especially in Benshangul and West Wolega regions. The director of OMN (Oromo Media Network) Mr. Jawar Mohammed who acts as Jihad extremist is also approached through a representative, Mr. Alula Solomon who is the leader of Tigray Youth in America.
OMN and OLF acted as a double-edged sword against Doctor Abiy Ahmed’s contentious reforms. Doctor Abiy Ahmed comes from the Oromo tribe and these two organizations presumably work for the benefit of the Oromo people. OLF created security problems in Western Wolega and Benshangul Regions, displacing other ethnic groups but heavily targeting the Amharas and Gurages. In the meantime, Oromo Media Network (OMN) instigates the so-called ‘Kerro’ (Jihad Militia) to defame the gracious works of the Prime Minister. OMN urges Kerro as if Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed ignored the advantages of the Oromo people, and to put extra pressure, claiming untimely questions such as land ownership in the city of Addis Ababa to the extent of raising unfair demand of condominium houses as well. Kerro mobs have been noticed carrying machete and nail staffed clubs to intimidate the hopeful candidates.
Condominium houses have been constructed for pre-registered applicants who are committed to saving money in the bank for over five years being anxious to secure their dwelling. While the truth is this, OMN initiates complex issues among the Oromos to forcefully stop the legal distribution of condominium houses to those who have been saving and waiting for a long time. The excuse for such pretext was, the land that the condominium houses constructed belonged to the Oromo farmers who have been displaced with unfair compensation from the City Council of Addis Ababa. Many lawyers and human right activists condemn vehemently propaganda. They say “even if it is true, they should apply for a fair revision to improve their payment from the government rather than taking mob action to stop the distribution.”
It was at this critical point the prominent human activist and renowned journalist Eskinder Nega took the initiation to voice the victims of Addis Ababa. The Acting Mayor Engineer Takele Umma who is also from the Oromo ethnic group seems reluctant to obey the prompt recommendations of OMN instead of taking orthodox decisions. There are sufficient shreds of evidence that the mayor himself was involved in this dirty game of denial.
The President of Oromo region Mr. Lemma Megerssa who is believed to be one of the engines of the reform has also been suspected to be part of this conspiracy that downgraded his reputation. Mr. Megerssa has been detected several times making paradoxical speeches that have negative meanings when translated. He speaks positive things in Amharic and negative things in the Oromo language, this type of injustice gave support to the Mayor and OMN, while the reverse is true for the victims.
Oromo complex is the main factor that became the driving force to such an illegal claim. The President has been heard saying that he is trying to undergo social engineering to radically change the demography of Addis Ababa. He said that he has convinced about five hundred thousand Oromos from Somali region to resettle them around the capital. Almost all the employees of the Oromo region have been also issued land and house so that they will be part of the residence of Addis Ababa.
Prior to these, eighteen banks have been systematically vandalized the same day in the Oromo region. This type of daylight robbery would suggest as premeditated action taken to cover the heavy burden of logistical costs of the resettlement program. On the other hand, over five hundred thousand Gedo people were forcefully displaced by Oromo extremists from Guji zone where they lived over centuries. A few weeks ago on the 6th of April 2019, OLF organized armed troops suddenly attacked Amhara dwellings of Ataye town, Kar-Kore, Kemise, Majete, Chererto, Ephrata and surrounding localities, in Northern Showa Zone; and applied their primitive Geda system to displace, rob, and loot the belongings of the victims.
Immediately after the incidence, the Federal Defense Forces arrived at the area but didn’t take action to stop the raids for they didn’t receive orders from higher authorities to act accordingly. The Amharas, who lost confidence in the pro-OLF government, were finally obliged to defend themselves. Over 15 lives have been recorded lost with numerous civilian injuries. OMN director Mr. Jawar Mohammed tried to cover up the deeds of OLF to divert the case towards TPLF, but Amhara authorities have disproved the infidel report, asserting the invaders were totally OLF armed troops.
Having known all this Dr. Abiy had no gut to denounce the actions of both parties for all of them are Oromos. It is clear that Dr. Abiy Ahmed is also suffering from the notion of Oromo complex for he didn’t dare to rise up being fair and just. He didn’t even dare to destroy the imaginary tale Anole statue that was erected in Arsi region by TPLF Woyane as divisive pictogram between the Oromo and Amhara peoples. He is not willing to remove the blue circle star sign from the National Flag that is not accepted by Ethiopians. He seems comfortable with article 39 of the Constitution which is the mother of division, misery, and hatred. Oromo Complex is a very sophisticated thing that is difficult to understand leave alone by other ethnic groups but also by the Oromos themselves. The elites propagate as if the Oromo Geda System is denied by the ruling class of the Ethiopian Monarchs as well as by the Orthodox Christian Church Leaders.
This allegation is far from the truth, for the first instance the Oromo Gada system is not that much to be proud of instead, it is very shameful, primitive, and barbaric practices. The so-called Geda System has eight years of five developmental stages. The first eight years is considered as a kid. The second eight years is taken as a teenager that participates in herding cattle. The third stage is recruited as youth ready to participate in the raids and looting of neighboring agriculturalists that live in highlands permanently. At this point, all Oromo youth and older are marching to the highlands at night and raid whatever is available and run with the booty to the lowlands where they live as nomadic pastoralists.
They have no clear doctrine of worship but they say God has sent three books to the world namely the Holy Bible to the Jews and Christians, The Quran to the Muslims and another book for the Oromos. The Jews and the Muslims picked the books and used them but the Oromo father neglected it and a black cow found it and consumed it. Then Black cows in the Oromo ethnic group are taken as sacred animals (The Oromo of Ethiopia 1500-1850 by Mohammed Hassen). When the black cows are dead their stomachs will be taken out to be read by wise Oromos who have the talent of reading the lost book, which is totally superstition and myth. Such infidel cheats are known as Aba Muda who is considered as a priest. Aba Muda will be visited by most of the Oromos once a year as a pilgrimage to get a blessing and to be anointed with butter by him.
The fourth stage group that is between the ages 24-32 will be selected to travel long distances as scouts to spy the next villages to be a raid. They study the number of people in that area the number of cattle they have and the type of weapon they carry and feed the information back to the Aba Gedas. The Aba Gedas will consider the power they have in comparison to the report they received from the scouts. Then they will go to weak areas like thunder and lightning in the middle of the night, raid everything and run away to the lowlands where they cannot be traced. The fifth stage is the time when the Aba Geda will be elected.
There are different leaders in the Aba Geda system.
Aba Geda is the leader of the community. Aba Dula is like a gang leader that is in charge of commanding the raid and looting campaign. Aba Boku is a spokesperson that explains the decision of the Aba Geda conference. Aba Sera is a retired person, over forty years of age and serves as a judge, etc. Whatsoever, this system is organized not to innovate new things but only strives on how to loot and rob other ethnic groups belongings by force.
Here there is another main thing that should be explained why such unlawful practices have become part of the norms to the backward Oromo ethnic group. In the Oromo culture, the firstborn son is the only child to inherit his parents’ property. The rest of the siblings are not allowed to share their parents’ wealth. Due to this fact, the others organize themselves and go somewhere to rob and kick start their independent life. After they get their share from the swag they will find their own new place and never go back to reside where they grew up. Because of this, the Geda system supports raids, looting and robbing other ethnic groups, which is disgusting and immoral. The Ethiopian Monarchs stopped such barbaric behavior and taught them even to wear clothes and start to stay in one area and do farming, instead of wandering from place to place following the tails of their cattle as pastoralists.
The Oromos used to piercing the vain and drain the blood of their animal alive, mix it with milk and drink it. One can imagine how barbaric it is and also the Holy Bible forbids such cruelty. For this reason, the Ethiopian Orthodox Church taught them to give up such type of inhuman behavior and to be kind and fair to animals. There are other superstitious practices accustomed by the Oromos such us worshipping a sycamore tree, (Adbar) smudging the bark with butter, and hanging slain chickens on the branches. Not only this but also rapping songs (wodaja) for fairies and calling of evil spirits to act as fortune tellers.
In spite of the fact that due to those two dedicated institutions they are transformed as modern peoples, but the Oromo elites try to hide the truth and accuse the Ethiopian Monarchs and the Ethiopian Orthodox Church which is a disgrace. Even recently though it was purposefully designed by TPLF in the 1990s’the Oromo elites were motivated to use Latin alphabets known as Qubee instead of very rich Geez alphabets. This shows that they feel being modern to cover their inferiority complex. Because of this, the new Oromo generation is denied to communicate with the diverse Ethiopian communities.
All these types of allegations are derived from an inferiority complex, but nothing else. Even now in the twenty-first century Oromo elites have no shame when they claim the capital city Addis Ababa as their territory, and demand special benefit for the Oromo people, denying other citizens. Dr. Abiy Ahmed who seems to be far ahead from the rest of the Oromo elites is believed to understand the reality, but lack the courage to confront those extremists like OLF and OMN.
On the contrary, the Amharas are far beyond the Oromos in everything. They are proud Ethiopians, fear God and believe that every human being is equal. They are confident in themselves and never be tempted to take advantage at the expense of someone else. Amharas love education and wisdom especially more in spiritual than secular life. They have written many books on animal hides and skins prior to the invention of paper.
The above history is just a synopsis but there are many that should be heart-breaking if they are mentioned to the public. Overcompensation is the sign of inferiority complex. Then Oromo complex is an incurable disease to Dr. Abiy Ahmed’s Government, Ethiopian contemporary reform and developmental harmony, unless and otherwise OMN (which acts as either Oromo Media Network or Oromo Muslim Network) and OLF (Oromo Liberation Front) are tamed by the exclusive force of law.
Oromo complex is a very big challenge to Prime Minister Dr. Abiy Ahmed’s government. Though there are still hopes to expedite the transitional reform the majority of Oromo elites are in delusion to take advantage bearing the slogan “Ke-enya” (belongs to Oromos only) in their minds instead of supporting the Prime Minister. Due to this fact, many key positions in the government have been taken by the Oromos and they are claiming even more. In the end, such injustice and unsatisfied greed will eventually act as terminal cancer and harm the visions and aspirations of this young Prime Minister. May God help him!