A regime believed to be illegitimate by all: why letting it stay? – By a concerned individual

May 29th, 2010 Print Print Email Email

Already five days have passed since the latest general election in Ethiopia. The government has announced that the party in power is the winner, claming almost 100% of the votes. However, given the wide-spread distrust and opposition of the Ethiopian people against the ruling party, it is hard to take the announced outcome without a pinch of salt. There is ample evidence that before and during the election, opposition parties and their supporters were put under tremendous pressure and disadvantages by the government in favor of its own party. This included harassment, intimidation, kidnapping, misinformation, death treat, and bribery, among others. Opposition parties who suffered from these unfortunate and illegal acts of the government, have made documentations of some examples of such incidences and made them available to the public. Foreign governments and organizations concerned about Ethiopia have also expressed their concerns about the unfairness of the election. For sure, with time, more cases of mistreatment of the opposition by the government will be unveiled. Rightfully, in reaction to this situation, at least two major opposition parties have publicly rejected the results of the election. They have, in fact, demanded a rerun of the election. If this demand is not given due consideration, they implied that the new Ethiopian government will not be legitimate at least in the eyes of the Ethiopian people. History has witnessed that the life-span of a government labeled as illegitimate by its own people is short and the opposition seems to understand this very well. That is where we are now, briefly stating.

I personally admire and salute the opposition leaderships for rejection the results of the fake election and demanding a new election. This is the right step to take and an act of good leadership and allegiance to the oppressed people of the country. Taking lessons from the 2005 election, I hope they will stick to their demands together and do whatever it takes until the demand is fulfilled. Realization the long-term value of this demand, the Ethiopian people should remain behind their leaders in the opposition as long as it is needed. It is most likely that leaders will be able to execute their entrusted responsibilities successfully when they are sufficiently supported by their followers. If so pursued, this can open a new chapter in Ethiopian history.

In the past, opposition parties were divided into two camps regarding participation in the May 23rd election: those who chose to participate in the election and those who did not. The majority of opposition party members and supporters who opted to participate in the election belonged to those who wanted to pursue peaceful struggle. This group did not believe armed struggle or any kind of action leading to violence would bring desirable changes in the country. It rather made a conscious decision to explore if there was any opportunity to wage peaceful struggle, including through participation in elections. On the other hand, most of those who elected or advocated boycotting the election were in favor of a multi-faceted struggle, including armed struggle. Analyzing the nature of the TPLF/EPRDF regime from past experiences, these people did not believe peaceful struggle alone would work in present-day Ethiopia. They rather expressed that participating in political elections in Ethiopia while TPLF is in control is tantamount to giving legitimacy to the regime, which would make the struggle even more difficult. In general, most of them right from the start and later on, after the 2005 election, didn’t consider the TPLF regime as legitimate.

Now, when one compares the views currently held by those who chose to participate in the recent election with the views of those who did not, it becomes clear that both groups consider the TPLF/EPRDF regime illegitimate. Accordingly, both seek to establish a legitimate government for Ethiopia, elected democratically by the people. Therefore, participation of the opposition in the recent election and the decision made by the leaderships should be given the credit of eliminating one of the major disagreements between the two groups. It should also be mentioned that the persistent and forceful demand by the other group might have contributed to the decision making-process by the former. With the establishment a key common ground for a struggle against a common enemy, there is no more a justifiable excuse for both groups now for not be able to work together. Thus it is time to shake hands and start the inevitable journey together.

Despite severe criticisms from some corners, the “lawful” opposition, by participation in the May 23rd election, was able to achieve some important things that worth mentioning here: (1) it was able to reorganize the Ethiopian people once again, which would have been difficult otherwise; (2) it was able to further expose the undemocratic and fascistic nature of the regime; (3) it was able to bring further sympathy, and possibly help, to the Ethiopian people from influential international/foreign organizations and individuals; and (4) it was able to demonstrate the civilized and peaceful characters of the Ethiopian people to the rest of the world.

In the writer opinion, for the prepared mind, these recent gains have created a fertile ground even better than in the past for renewed commitment to work together against a determined common enemy. They should be taken advantage of by all those concerned about their fellow citizens and Motherland. The regime is believed to be illegitimate by all. Why letting it stay?

  1. Anonymous
    | #1

    I guess this is the last chance lost by the ruling party. Under the earth in any standard the government who calls it self one of the democratic government miss a simple logic about role of parties in democratic movement. Personally I’m really confused now more than any time in the past. I really missed the logic of wining by 100% or 90% or so as far as the can make the election as they wish. If I were one of the bust advisor of the ruling part I would be such ignorant to advise to win by 100%. At the same time I’m sure that this is not what Meles want at this moment. I pretty sure that he gave strong message to win by wider gap but not like this. Melese has always say this is not what we gave them to day, I’m sure he has already internally said -this is really not what we wanted. Actually in my thinking, this result, will cost him a recode breaking both from his allies and the lovers of Ethiopia. I would end saying Good luck!!!

  2. tazabi
    | #2

    Simple answer to your question. Who is that you have in mind when you say all. Not only you are not all, but not even a majority. Not even a significant part of Ethiopians. Those who talk about legitmacy of a child of Adwa being a Prime Minister, are actually the most illegitimate to be citizens of that great country let alone to lead it.

  3. Assta B. Gettu
    | #3

    Prediction:

    Meles Seitanawi (Zenawi) will expire before he completes his five years terms; his wife Jezebel (Azeb) will then try to finish the five year terms on behalf of her diseased husband. The opposion, so enervated and fragmented, will gather forces and inveigh against Azeb’s promotion to the prime minister’s office without a valid public election.

    Friends of Meles Seitanawi – Washington and London, especially the decadent African Union – will search hard to find a person who behaves like Meles, who governs the people of Ethiopia like Meles, and who serves his country by the help of the Western donations – a subservient leader who always depends on the West and fulfills the interests of the West rather than his people’s interests and needs.

    Of course, it will not be hard for the West to find such a selfish person within the ruling party if not from the other side of the opposition. Once the West has picked up a person to govern Ethiopia, that person will govern Ethiopia despite the rallies, the slogans, the shouts, the criticisms, and the condemnations against the West by the opposing factions.

    To mute or to silence the opposition, the ruling party will release some political prisoners as a good gesture, and one of these political prisoners to be released will be Birtukan Mideksa. As soon as Birtukan is released from her jail after one and a half years in jail, she may or many not have a big crowd to welcome her home because of the restriction put in place in advance by the ruling party, never to allow any gatherings of people around her; even the media will be prevented from talking to her.

    The real political fight, and at that, the exciting one, will start when the five-year term of Meles is over under Jezebel’s (Azeb’s) or someone’s rule. This is the time when most of the Ethiopians in the diaspora will return in great number to their homeland with their immense wealth of knowledge and American dollars.

    Some of these Ethiopians will participate in the Ethiopian politics, and that is where the excitement comes in from their participation in every thing that concerns their country.

    These children of diaspora are more seasoned in politics than those Ethiopians who have never crossed the Atlantic Ocean and drunk the American distilled or purified water – the Jeffersonian democracy. Some of these new-comer Ethiopians are medical doctors, engineers, historians, mathematicians, archeologists, and experts in many crucial areas. These are the ones who can build Ethiopia, who can rule Ethiopia, and who can serve the people of Ethiopia honestly and truthfully.

    There will be, of course, some hindrances for the new-comer Ethiopians from those other Ethiopians who have been in Ethiopia and working for a long time with a little knowledge they may have. They may think the new-comer Ethiopians with their superior knowledge are a great threat to them; therefore, they will not communicate or associate with them friendly and try to avoid them as much as they could wherever they meet them.

    These westernized Ethiopians may not all succeed in building Ethiopia the way they want; they have been detached for a long time from the existing cultures of Ethiopia, such as going to Church every Sunday morning or every Friday to the Mosque and listening to the preacher for at least one hour. They are not used to leave home to go to Church with out first eating their breakfast. They are not accustomed to taking the Holy Communion before they eat any food or drink any water. Generally they are not used to “ቁጭ በል እናውጋ” (sit down and let us talk). Mostly they are governed by time; therefore, they don’t have enough time or desire to talk with the other Ethiopian who does not leave without greeting his friend and talking a little bit with him.

    Most Ethiopians at home are not governed by time; instead they govern the time. Westernized Ethiopians are slaves of time, always in a hurry, always to be at work on time, and always leave their work at a fixed time.

    At the end of the day, these westernized Ethiopians will learn how to govern their time like the rest of the Ethiopian people: Fore example, if one is asked to be at a wedding dinner at 7:30 P.M., he will be there at 9:30 P.M., and no question is asked why he is too late. This is one of the Ethiopian cultures; therefore, these westernized Ethiopians must follow the cultures and traditions of their country. It will take few hundred years for all Ethiopians to learn time management and do their daily work and complete it on time if not in time.

    There are some Ethiopians who do not even know when they were born, because their parents do not value time or do not want to put in writing the date their child was born. They are more overjoyed and more occupied by the birth of their new baby than by the time itself.

    Westernized Ethiopians with all their sophistications, I believe, will change Ethiopia and lead the Ethiopian people in the right direction, so let us encourage them to go back to their mother land and serve their country as soon as the Meles regime is over.

  4. visitor
    | #4

    it is obvious that the tplf is ruling ethiopia by gun.dont make mistake about it ethiopia is under one party system since 1991 and countinue to be a one party dictatorial ethinic based regime.it is a regime who came to power through lies and decit.it is a regime which main idea is to destroy ethiopia and divided the country in language basises and rule through divide and conquer method peroid.if those of you think ethiopia is a multi party system you are dead wrong ethiopia never been one.the only soulution to remove this brutal regime is to speak to in the only language they under stood.soon or later the ethiopian people will prevail!!!god bless ethiopia and those who lost their life in the 2005 election to bring democracy in ethiopia,their blood will never be forgoten,the struggle must continiue to remove this killer brutal regime in ethiopia.

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