Re: Two prominent Ethiopians join popular opposition UDJP – Robele Ababya

November 27th, 2009 Print Print Email Email

This is the most exciting news I have been waiting for. What is so unique in this breakthrough is the public apology expressed by Dr. Negasso Gidada, which apology is one of the rarest cases, if any, in Ethiopian politics. His concern expressed for Birtukan Mideksa portraying her in so many words as a political prisoner was music to my ears when I heard him on the VOA Radio broadcast yesterday, Thursday, 27 November 2009. I sincerely respect and admire him for the exemplary and courageous stand he took.

Ato Seye Abraha said “Birtukan Yegnam nat” (Birtukan is ours too” at a gathering in Awassa to the delight and enthusiasm of participants expressed with deafening applause which I could hear on the radio.

The duo, Dr. Gidada and Ato Seye, will greatly contribute to the progress of democracy in Ethiopia. The grand example that they have set will be glorified in the annals of Ethiopian history. One would be tempted to wish that Meles could emulate the example for it is in his power to change the political landscape with a stroke of a pen for the better.

Indeed, the UDJP is a national political entity standing for the rights of the individual regardless of creed and ethnic origin embracing all its members under this principle.

Yes, all genuine democrats are principle-bound set aside their minor political difference for the time being in order to ensure that there shall be zero tolerance for regimes that keep political prisoners in our motherland, Ethiopia.

The hallmark of democratic states is that they do not hold political prisoners.

Sincerely yours,

Robele Ababya

  1. ደምስ
    | #1

    They did their part, it is up to the Ethiopian people to support this party. Sit down and taking abuse or humilation from dictator melese regime is not an option.

    I have a feeling the fake opposition like kehadi engineer hailu will be told by his master evil melese to discredit this party. If does not work, the dictator will call them terrorist or some thing like that and will send them to kaliti prison.

    Dictator melese will never take a chance like the last election. He had been humilated by Ethiopian people. This time he make sure that is not going to happen. He does not believe with fair election. Fair and free elction is a major headache and it will keep him awake all the time.

    The gov’t will not allow them to have meeting by denying permit and also give them a hard time by his brutal security. He will through them in jail befor election. I’m hoping some kind of God intervention will happen soon.

  2. aha!
    | #2

    According to your assertion, “UDJP is a national political entity standing for the rights of individuals regardless of creed and ethnic origin embracing all its members under this principle” is only 50% true since it joined the negative forces of disintegration of Medrek a coalition of loyalist opposition parties and Tigrai Harena with ethnic agenda, and the joining of Ato Siye and Dr. Gidada according to your goal of advancing the democratic movement with two contadicting agenda: one national and another one ethnic agenda. What is the motive for these officials to join UDJP and in what capacity, more than what they would achieve from their own ethnic-based parties?

  3. aha!
    | #3

    Amend: The statement second from the last should read. I would like to replace the goal to advance the “democratic movement” to “freedom movement” from political and economic strangle hold of TPLF and TPLF affiliated enterprizes with two contradicing goals: one national and the other ethnic agenda.

  4. Leul
    | #4


    You are a very keen, humaniterian and intelligent man with good will for Ethiopia. I admire you. But do not be excited about these two people especially Seye. He never said sorry to the Ethiopian poeple. That means he is not regretting about the human lives lost to “librate” Erteria and other lives lost in the rest of Ethioia while he was a minster.

    Of course I have forgiven Nagasso because he clearly said it. A good man!

  5. AFDist
    | #5

    Ex-Ethiopian president, Negaso Gidada’s political move: backward or forward?

    I read a news about Negaso Gidada, the ex-president of Ethiopia joining the oppostion party UDJ, with the feeling of ambivalence. Is his move constructive or destructive to the liberation movement of his own nation, Oromo? Is his current political development a backward move or a forward move? To answer these questions, we need to look at the conflict between the interest of the nation Oromo, to whom he belongs, and the interest of the region called Ethiopia composing many nations, in which the two Abyssinian nations aka Amhara and Tigaru were exchangeably dominant in the past about 150 years. In short we need to look at the complementarity and contradiction between Ethiopian “democratic movement” and Oromian liberation movement.

    As I was a university student some years back, I and one of my friends were sitting in a bus and looking throught the window a nice city we were touring and accidnetally we saw one of our teachers (lecturers) walking. This lecturer was a bit elderly, light skined, had bald hair with full beard. My funny friend just watched and asked me, whether the teacher is walking forward or backward. Because of his bald head and full beard on his chin, we couldn’t differentiate his face from the back of his head. That was very funny indeed, so both of us laughed. Since then, this episode remaind to be a joke among our circle of friends. As I read Negaso’s decision to join the “multi-national” UDJ instead of the national party OFC, I just remembered this joke and laughed at the measure taken by the ex-president. A question came to my mind was: is this backward or forward political move?

    To look at the political career of the ex-president, first he was OLF activist who used to believe in liberating Oromia from Abyssinian colonialism; then he joined OPDO believing in ethnic federalism; after he left OPDO I heard him demanding Oromo’s right to self-determination per referendum; now he joined a party which rejects the right of Oromo nation to self-determination and even wants to dismantle Oromia with a pre-text of preferring xeqilaygizat-federalism in contrast to the kilil-federalism, which is supported by Oromo people. Is this move a backward or a forward move for one Oromo intellectual, who wrote his desseration on Oromo history and who used to struggle for the right of Oromo in the past 40 years?

    No question the Oromo liberation movement is getting momentum, slowly but surely, so that many stakeholders in the region are in a big worry (firstly Habesha elites, secondly the Western allies of Habeshas who used to support them in suppressing Oromo and thirdly few elites of the small nationalities in the empire, who are mistakenly in fear of Oromo’s “future domination”). These anti-Bilisummaa (anti-freedom) forces are now doing every thing under the sky to inhibit and hinder the Oromo liberation movement. One of the “modern and 21st century” move to hinder Oromo from achieving Bilisummaa (freedom of) Oromo and Walabummaa (sovereignity of) Oromia is playing the game of the fake democratization of Ethiopia.

    The opponents of Oromo liberation movement know very well that genuine democratization of Ethiopia is the best MEANS to achieve the END of the Oromo liberation movement, that is why they only give lip service, but never allow it happen. Conservative and old-mode (faaraa) Amhara elites with the mind of the 20th century Nefxenya (rule using nefx or gun) already showed their alliance with the 21st Nefxenya Tigarus now in power with the Zenawi-Shawel-handshake. The smart and modern (araadaa) Nefxenyas of both Habesha nations are re-organizing themselves in UDJ and G-7. That is why I am not surprised by the raised handshake of Siye Abraha and Gizachew Shiferraw, but the raised handshake of Negaso Gidada and Gizachew Shiferraw made me to be sad and at the same time to laugh, that is the ambivalence of emotion I had. Fact on the ground is that araadaa way or faaraa way, all the handshakes are about saving the empire! The faaraa Nefxenyas try to keep the empire with old method like talking about the “history” that Debteraa Bahirey and Aleqaa Taye wrote about Ethiopia and demanding directly to dismantle Oromia. The araadas use totally other methods, for example to reduce the danger of dismantling the empire domination system, which is coming from Oromo, they use the following theories as postmodern approachs now applied to fight against Oromo’s right to self-determination in order to save the empire from disintegration:

    - “All Ethiopians including Tigrayans are Oromo, so Oromo liberation in a form of Oromian autonomy or Oromian independence is not necessary”, this is the theory constantly preached by Habesha elites in forums and paltalks.

    - “Oromos as a majority can rule Ethiopia, so let’s fight for democracy together, no need of Oromo liberation movement”, this is an approach of the modern Habesha movement which tries to instrumentalize Oromo individuals like Birtukan Midhagsa, now joined by Negaso Gidada.

    - “Every body in Ethiopia is blended with Oromo, so Ethiopia is Oromia and Ethiopian empire is in reality Oromo empire”, Siye Abraha’s approach belongs here based on the speech he made as he toured North America.

    - “Let’s focus on development of Oromia, our Oromo people need more food rather than freedom”, TPLF’s and its puppets in OPDO approach this way to divert attention of Oromo from struggle for liberation and to pacify Oromo.

    - “Oromo need unconditional national independence without regional union, but OLF is the first enemy who abandoned this goal; so first let’s focus on bashing, cursing, demonizing, discrediting and villifying OLF, specially its hitherto leaders”, Weyane cadres acting as the radical pro-Oromian-independence tried this method to devide and destroy the vanguard liberation front.

    Be it they are faaraa or araadaa, till now there is no any Amhara party, which came to the middle ground to accept and respect kilil-(“ethnic”)-federalism as a compromise solution for the conflict between the pro-unitarity Amhara elites and pro-independence Oromo elites. By the way, I personally don’t believe that there is any “multi-national (hibre-biher)” party in Ethiopian empire. One of the fake and fiction stories we are hearing from Ethiopia now is that people try to devide political parties in that empire as “ethnic based” and “hibre-biher”. All Amhara parties like AEUP, CUDP, EDP, EDUM, EPPF, EPRP, G7M, UDJ and UEDF-diaspora try to sell them selves as all inclusive political parties. And they try to villify others like OFC, SEPDC, OLF, ONLF, SLF, etc as narrow minded “national (ye biher)” organizations. For their justification they try to show us that for instance UDJ is lead by people from all nationalities.

    Here, I think there is no necessity to fool each other. People from other nationalities, who are active in Amhara parties are only hard-wares (biologically from other nations), but with Amhara soft-ware (Amhara mind persuing to keep Amhara interset). Just look at those in UDJ and G-7: Birtukan Midhegsa is Amhara soft-ware in Oromo hard-ware (she is Amhara in mind and Oromo in blood); Hailu Araya is Amhara in mind and Tigaru in blood; Berihanu Nega is Amhara in mind and Gurage in blood; Muluneh Iyuel is Amhara in mind and Hadiya in blood, etc. Just look at their attempt of stressing to use only Amharinya by all parties, they never dare to use Afaan Oromo, eventhough they try to get the support of Oromo. We can forget the other conservative “hibre-biher” parties like AEUP and EPRP, who talk only about one “Ethiopian people (ye Itiyophiya hizb)”, they never dare to say “Ethiopian peoples (ye Itiyophiya hizbooch)”! But let us all be aware of Amhara soft-wares in Other’s hard-ware. Here I just want to add my observation regarding the form of expression used by Merera Gudina and Negaso Gidada in the last few weeks. They hitherto used to talk about “ye Itiyophiya hizboch” till a journalist from Addis-dimts confronted Merera few weeks back in one of his last interviews. Since then both of them talk only about “ye Itiyophiya hizb”, which is loved by Habesha elites just to confirm their mantra of “only one people” in Ethiopia. To my understanding both expressions are not wrong, it only depends on the context. When they are talking in the context of Ethiopian govenment Vs Ethiopian people, it is right to use “ye Itiyophia hizb” i.e in relation to only one federal government, but when the discussion is about the right of nations in the empire, using the expression “ye Itiyophiya hizboch” is appropriate. So I just encourage Oromo politicians to use both expressions depending on the context.

    Regarding the move of Oromo nationalists nowadays, I think there is a consensus on the route of the journey to our END. We have to keep the status-quo (a limited cultural autonomy) from any setback; we have to move together towards true Oromian autonomy, the goal set by OFC; then we have to finish the journey to self-determination per referendum leading to one of the two outcomes (independent Oromia with a union of nations in the region or independent Oromia without such a union). Otherwise, according to my hitherto observation, Abyssinian elites and Oromian elites preach democracy for the sake of two different and opposite ENDs:

    - for Abyssinian elites, democratization of Ethiopia is a meanse for decimation of Oromia in to ten pieces. That is why they propagate geography-based or xeqilaygizat-federation on the contrary to the language-based or kilil-federation aka “ethnic” federalism. It is a move towards unitary Ethiopia, melting all nations in to Amharic speakers. Is Negaso now prefering this move?

    - for Oromians, democratization of Ethiopia is a meanse for liberation of Oromia from the empire domination system. That is why we want to convert the fake kilil-federation of Weyane to a genuine kilil-federation, which can be the best precondition to move to self-determination of Oromo.

    Abyssinian elites theoretically preach democracy, but practically they walk against it. Oromo elites do have no fear from genuine democracy for it can lead us to liberated Oromia. At the same time we do have no fear from union of nations in the empire or region if it is based on our free will for it is the best way to Oromo’s leadership in the region as it is a biggest and strongest nation of the area. Based on the difference we do have among Oromo people in respect to the two possible outcomes of self-determination per referendum, I think “pro independence without union” Oromo, who do cry foul against “pro independence within a union” Oromo’s dedication to democratize Ethiopia, should stop their lamenting. Democratization of Ethiopia is not the END per se, but the meanse to the END i.e to liberation of Oromia. If we percieve it like this, then it is clear why Abyssinian elites get panic when ever genuine democratization is getting root in the empire!

    Coming back to the raised handshake of Negaso with Gizachew and Siye, let’s look at the possible impact on our liberation movemnt. Just as Weyane cadres and their web-sites rejoiced and jumped because of the advantage they did get from the handshake between Meles Zenawi & Hailu Shawel, the handshake of NegasoGidada & Gizachew Shiferraw also made pro-unitarity Amhara elites to sing and jump with joy. Why? Because they percieved it as a triumph of their movement of unitarity over Oromo movemnt for liberty. To their pleasure, surprisingly Negaso made an analogy of a chicken in an egg-shell for “national movements” such as Oromo liberation movement. He just failed to percieve the smart Amhara national movement covered with “Ethiopian multi-national movemnt” in its true nature. Thus, in reality he just moved from his own egg-shell (Oromo liberation movment) in to the other one’s egg-shell (Amhara domination movment). Why did he do this? He already gave the answer: because of the “love and popularity” he got from Habesha elites! Interestingly this is the smart method Habesha elites used till now to weaken Oromo nationalists, i.e make them “friends”, give them “love and recognition” as far as they are in line with Habesha elites’ domination move and the same Habesha elites do the opposite (hate, denounce, despise, denigerate, etc) when ever such Oromo elites start to emphasize the importance of Oromo liberation from Habesha elites’ domination.

    Anyways I hope that Oromo individuals in UDJ one day wake up and smell the coffee. Unless Habesha elites in parties like UDJ and G-7 are ready to accept and respect the God-given and Man-made right of Oromo people to self-determination, unless they at least decide to recognize Oromian autonomy in Ethiopian context, no araadaa manipulation of Habesha elites will stop Oromo people from pushing in the liberation struggle for our desired Kaayyoo (goal). But for the sake of fighting against fascist Weyane at the moment, I dare to support the move of both Negaso and Siye to strengthen the currently viable opposition aka Medrek. If UDJ in Medrek is for the true kilil-federation, I think Negaso’s current political move is a forward move, if UDJ is to prefer xeqilaygizat-federation, a pre-text for dismantling Oromia, Negaso just moved backward. The only thing that all stakeholders in the empire/region have to have in mind is that they can not fool Oromo people, who have no other wish and intention except securing our rigth to self-determination.


  6. mateos
    | #6

    I believe the killer and the lier may run out of excuses to more killing and lying if this union is true. The killer Meles and the lier Bereket may have a trust in their gun taunting agazi stooges and the non-stop microphone who bombarded many Ethiopians with deadly lies for the past 18 years; however, everything has an ending game and I do believe the killer-lier time is up with a single gun shot! There will be one Ethiopia with out ethnic boundaries, there will be peace, prosperity, there will also be peace the brotherly horn of Africa communities, where there will be free trade between east to west, north to south, there will be hope among the entire youth of the horn of Africa, the natural/unnatural starvation, ignorance will be eradicated from the entire continent of Africa ones of the likes of weyane mafia families are eradicated from the face of the planet, and I’m much more optimistic now that the aiga jungle constitution goes back and buried in the aiga jungle! PEACE FOR ALL ETHIOPIANS AND ETHIOPIAN SUPPORTERS FROM WALKS OF LIFE; MELES THE KILLER AND BEREKET THE LIER WILL BE CAPTURED AND SERVE LIFE IN PRISON IN ETHIOPIA!

  7. ውሰታ
    | #7

    ደምሰ የምትባለው ሰውዬ, ሎተሪ ገዝተሕ ሳይደርስሕ የተደሰትክ ትመስላለሕ!!!

  8. ደምስ
    | #8

    አቶ ውሰታ: ሎተሪ ደርሶኝ እንደሆን እንዴት አወቅ?

  9. banjaw
    | #9

    When situation arise when a minority goverment is dictorial, repressive and brutal and so must be changed, Mr Gidada and Mr Seye have moved in the right direction
    But the bigger problem is the dicttorial, repressive and brutal goverment is fully within Washington orbit, acting as a reliable proxy enforcing US geopolitical interest in the resource rich Horn of Africa.
    But the only solution is to free our self from western domination and to frustrate US
    imperial desigins in the Horn of Africa.

  10. Habtamu Dametie
    | #10

    i have an idea that development and bread first. We Ethiopian are not know which come first. We are poor country and before politics we have to have bread and good life and after that we can thing about other things. It is not the time to thing about race . we all are created by GOD and our fathers are Adam and Hi wan. We all will leave on this planet for very short time and will be better to think and struggle that all us leave peacefully and with love. It does not have use to think about race, oromo, Amhara, Tigray etc. let us think all are Ethiopian and all are one. by the way no one can be proud of by his race, some one is by chance Amhara or tigray. but one can be proud by his potential that can do something. race is nothing that makes proud. Let us thing how we can work and and leave together than thinking about specific races and want to liberate them. I know politicians and some groups will try to satisfied his/her interest by mobilizing peoples by raising some issues that he might think very hot. Finally i want to express that Ethiopia people is wise and analyze things better than the politicians and Ethiopia will exist forever.

  11. Laughing at AFDist
    | #11

    AFDist, you copy and paste your long but empty article every where.
    shame on you. dont panic. true unity is good for every body.

  12. aha!
    | #12

    Is this a nostalgia for good deed these officials did during their time in office with TPLF/eprdf regime, or is it a failure to persceive the deductive logic that Tigrai Harena/Medrek are the two sides of the same coin, because they never condemned the separate but equal, divide and rule policy of ethnic and seccessionist politics. Instead the media and freelance essayists bash the TPLF/eprdf leadrship for ruthlesseness, lawlessness, attrocities and corruptions comitted, but not the economic and political strangle hold of the country and its people, while succumbing to the alterego of TPLF/eprdf which brings more of the same and the alterego of EPLF/Eritrea to TPLF/eprdf regime which brings Chaos, if we allow for a second invasion from Eritrea.

    Even with the best of intentions of UDJP standing up for individual freedom regardless of ethnicity, the courrent current membership of the two officials, not knowing in what capacity of membership, does not tip the tilt the balance towards the positive forces of integration for Unity, Territorial Integrity, Sovereignty of Ethiopia and Ethiopians, where according to the original constitution by Emperor haile Selassie, King of Kings, Lion of Judah, where Ethiopia blongs to all Ethiopians alike and individual can settle anywhere, work and proper without being confined to ethnic boundries. To announce that as a big break through is even futile and lacks depth of perception. It is deception politics of the second kind/round following that of K-5, and KILL-6, a precurssor to the formation of UDJP, a formidable alternative and heir apparent to kinijit. That party now is under the wing of Tigrai Harena/FDD, wearing two hats: one ethnic and the other national agenda.

  13. Anonymous
    | #13

    YOU SAID ” “Ethiopian people (ye Itiyophiya hizb)”, they never dare to say “Ethiopian peoples (ye Itiyophiya hizbooch)”! ” there is no such English “Peoples” where did you get this word be who you are instade of being Mr X or Y.

  14. Tenkir
  15. Walfidaa
    | #15

    “…Just as Weyane cadres and their web-sites rejoiced and jumped because of the advantage they did get from the handshake between Meles Zenawi & Hailu Shawel, the handshake of Negasso Gidada with Gizachew Shiferraw also made pro-unitarity Amhara elites to sing and jump with joy. Why? Because they perceived it as a triumph of their movement of unitarity over Oromo movement for liberty…”

    Well said!!

Comments are closed.