Voices of the Visionaries By Ewnetu Sime.

February 13th, 2012 Print Print Email Email

This article is mainly to acknowledge a lesson learnt from recent Political Forum held at Columbia University. After attending the forum I posed to myself several questions, what did we learn from the forum and what action we should do to advance it?, and decided to write the following:. (The summary of the event entitled “Ethiopians hold Historic Panel Discussion “at Columbia University posted on 29/01/12 in some websites.)

As we all know, the Ethno-centric TPLF’s leaders are incompetent, repressive, corrupt, and theirs values driven by money, and their party controlled the country’s economy through endowments enterprises such as EFFORT and GUNA. With this scheme the regime looted and stashed billions dollars into foreign banks, and placed a policy that forces indigenous farmers to be driven out of their land by government leasing the land for 99 years. As a result, the farmers became homeless in their own birth place, and the precious natural resources like forests destroyed by new foreigner’s investors more rapidly than nature can replenish. This land grab drive in Ethiopia by foreigners is accelerating fueled by the TPLF’s corrupt leaders by making secret deals and putting billions into their own pockets as our people continue live in extreme poverty.

It is unimaginable how they are doing this free handout of national land to foreigners without any guilt. The landless feeling of rural household are now reflecting to urban dwellers through a new expanded lease policy that shows the regime continues it reckless policy to enrich itself. Their claim in growth economy talk often rings hollow. It is known fact the basic commodity prices increase has put the overwhelming majority of citizens to extreme poverty, while the regime and its cronies become extremely rich.

The TPLF Leaders have no ability or willingness to draft a road map or a vision for a better way of good economy can build for Ethiopia society. They are not seeking to the well-being of society. They are merely implementing mercenary work. They are committed in self-serving desire to win at all costs. They continue to rule through sheer terror. Their campaigns in name of terror/Akeldama to arrest, torture, killing of the democratic forces or the propaganda on ethnic federalism etc. on regime controlled media do not cut it anymore. The diaspora are continuing exposing the regime corrupt practice, human rights violation, etc. until Ethiopians achieves freedom.

Thanks to the internet, now we have more power than ever before to expose mis- guided policy and others bad deeds. The voice of the visionaries reject the regime’s mockery of democracy, abuse the rule of law, and Justice, suppresses the media, tortures, jails and kills the decedents. Furthermore, it rejects the notion of exploitation of the country’s wealth to continue in its present form. Our children’s children should not expect to inherit these conditions. Dr. Aklog Birara, a known scholar in economics field, refereeing to his seminal work on land grab, “The Great Land Giveaway (2011) book “, and other of his commentaries in several free media outlets argue with concrete facts and supported by other think tank studies that the regime claim the lease land is vacant, create better opportunities, or provided compensation for the farmers, etc. are not true. The Human Rights Watch, video clips by Guardian Co., UK newspaper, Aljazeera etc. all showed through facts on the ground the Ethiopia regime is forcing tens of thousands of people to leave their homes as part of this farmland lease policy. During this NY forum, we listened to what Dr.Aklog had to say regarding on this subject. One of the many heart-wrenching stories includes the following: The Indian commercial manager at a site in Gambella says the Ethiopia government “Gave it to us, and we took it. Seriously, we did not even see the land. They offered it. That all”. Dr. Aklog calls it “farmland colonization by invitation”. Baffling indeed.
As opposition group continue to have friction and too little collaborations among them, the major concerns of the people are getting lost. Make no mistake to varying degrees all opposition groups are imperfect and have some major concerns that makes to some extent destructive, as result TPLF regime keep benefiting.

Unfortunately, opposition appears to be unwilling to acknowledge this problem and always hasn’t lived up to their rhetoric in forming United Front on the commonality they have. We clearly understand that the opposition political point of view is not one size fits all but at least should be focused on common causes and shared values. Therefore, the voices of visionaries call relentlessly to build a highly interactive community opposition group.

The opposition group shall associate on Ethiopia Unity, exchange ideas, critique as idea presented out of place, adapt to willing to cozy up and to overlook past disagreement, and keep conversation going on common causes and shared values. The visionary agenda of the intellectuals shall be to continue to engage in a struggle for people economic and political empowerment, even though it will be long and protracted. We understand that it is neither smooth nor simple too. The United front is not always in harmonies, but badly needed to save the country from continuation of ethno-centric TPLF regime that runs a toxic single ethnic-based rule.

The recent successful political forum held in New York on 1/28/12 is one of the pathways to connect and collaborate with concerned diaspora citizen in the search for a viable solution to the problems facing Ethiopia. The forum also provided an outlet to voice our visions for the future and work with people around a mutual goal in freeing up the country from TPLF’s regime. One hopes that similar forum to be established in other states.

We need to recognize all of us may have our own opinions about politics. Some of us are more involved and interested in the political process than others are. While the more involved group actively participate in organizing mass rally or exposing crimes on internet news media against TPLF regime, the less involved group need to help and support in whatever way they can. At a minimum they need to stay informed. This New York forum demonstrated the usefulness of dialog, discussions of idea to minimize and finally eliminate existing opposition groups’ differences.

If you care about Ethiopia do not remain idle, get involved and make your voice be heard. It will take a massive effort, discourse, dialogue, and to get Ethiopia back on its feet and to make it home again for all Ethiopians.

  1. aha!
    | #1

    Thanks for your review of the conference, titled the voices of the visionaries, about “the lessons learned from the political forum” and your repeated labeling of the current regime as “ethno-centric TPLF leaders”/regime with ethnic fedralism, secessionism and totaliarinism directly supported by the teletafi (ethnic fedralist) parties and the loyalist (ethnic federalist) now posing as OPDF/EFDF/fdre or OPDF/OFF/EFDF/fdre to form a new fedral democratic Ethiopia as if fdre does not exist in the the existing political model in Medrek, a mirror image of TPLF/eprdf regime with ethnic agenda or as you put it ethnocentric Medrek with ex-TPLFites, the loyalist opposition leaders that do not have as their goals: unity territorial integrity, sovereignity of Ethiopia and Ethiopians, where the last item refers to individual freedom, liberty and equality to have precedence over ethnic and secessionist rights in the fashion prevaining in the constitution of the western democratic counties. You assessment of the voices of the visionaries bypasses the criteria stipulated above that aspires to restore individual fredom, Ethiopian Naionalism, Ethiopian National Interests and the sovereignity of Ethiopia from the minority ethnic rule now and majority ethnic rule in the future to eestablish a truley democratic rule in place of ethnic rule, ethnic dictatorship of any sort based on individual freedom, liberty and equality to have precedence over ethnic and secessionist rights, which are mutually exclusive.

    Your review and assement of the voices of the visionaries, both from the stand point of Dr. Aklog Birara and others do not address those concerns, since the main contending ideologies are centered around ethnic fedralism, secessionism and totaliarinism, stipulated in the constituion. However, I agree to your assertion, which was not the outcom of the political forum: that Opposition group(s) shal associate on Ethiopian Unity”, territorial integrity, sovereignity of Ethiopia and Ethiopians, by abandoning the current support to the frame work of the constituion, which nevertheless be construed as treason by the current regime deniying the power to govern with its operating system, tools and utilities and its ability to draft subsequent laws, supported by the teletafi (ethnic fereralist) parties and merging with those with national agenda and not vice versa. The supporters folow suite by changing their political outlook to Ethiopiawinet first and their ethnicity second, a reversal from from the indoctrination by TPLF/eprdf regime, with due respect to their Ethiopian citizenship no matter what their political outlook.

  2. Girum
    | #2

    First and for most I do not have that much trust on Diaspora oppositions living in US and UK.
    Because usually they do not want to address the realities behind African and in general 3rd world ‘dictators’ or ‘democrats’ and rather they knowingly or unknowingly try to cover up realities related to global capitalism whose epicenter and crux is US and UK. And hence when they talk about land grab or mass impoverishment or natural resource plundering or whatever crisis they just simply automatically attribute all this problems to Ato Meles while totally covering up the globally pervasive effects of global capitalism. Now a day’s so many peoples, even very known intellectuals in the filed of economics and other streams are condemning and making demonstrations against global capitalism. To the contrary many Ethiopian intellectuals in Diaspora, especially in US and UK, are rather trying to cover up the evils of global capitalism and are totally blaming Ato Meles and similar 3rd world country leaders for all the pervasive crisis. And hence it is very tragic and amazing and i dare to tell that most of them are some how confused and also committing intellectual dishonesty, ignorance and arrogance. To the contrary such wise and farsighted guys like FEKADU BEKELE are working in exposing the demerits of global capitalism. If we are talking about mass impoverishment, war and land grabbing and others crisis then it is the attributes of global capitalism. I am very afraid that so many Diaspora intellectuals in US and UK, under the disguise of fighting Ato Meles, are knowingly or knowingly, are guardians and stooges of global capitalism. And due to this if Meles is toppled by any Means and they are to control power it is my belief that they are to continue in sustaining the status quo of global capitalism’s social order in Ethiopia. And hence if they have the opportunity to cling to power, then I dare to say that same mass impoverishment would have taken place, except some blatant racism and other crimes committed by the incumbent. Therefore whether we talk about dictatorship or democracy, they are secondary matters, and in such a meaningful and vital way such ideals are ruled out by the pervasive effects of global capitalism. And hence what rules the world is neither local national democracy nor local national dictatorship but rather global capitalism. And hence why the Diaspora opposition and non opposition politicians and intellectuals keep quite or shut their mouth regarding global capitalism while they day and night talk about national dictatorship and national democracy? What I happen to understand is that they are some how in intellectual quandary. They are simply under the illusion and fantasy of bogus democracy through mere election, as if it is of heavenly divine nature, and hence they have forgotten the economic aspect of nations and the world as a whole. All such global oppressions and racism and war are eventually to pave the way for grabbing of material resources and hence it is economic interest.
    Like most of other 3rd world leaders, except few like Ghadafi, Ato Meles is also a stooge client-regime already installed to safeguard the interests of global capitalism by the Western governments. And hence he is doing pretty well his home-works and assignments according to rules of give and take modus operandi. And hence Ato Meles and TPLF have acquired, as a reward for their service, such multi-billion dollar economic empire called EFFORT that is working in collaboration with global capitalist agents like Alamudi and other affiliates. Alamudi as a broker and agent facilitates land grabbing with Arabs and others. Even a recently posted article in Abugida has mentioned the support of Western governments for the process of land grabbing and its aftermath dislocation of native inhabitants on the lands like Gambella. And in return Ato Meles claim that they are fighters of terrorism in the region and hence they are serving the interest of the West in order to receive loan and donation that will be systematically looted and siphoned. Even I was laughing when so many say that Ato Meles and TPLF looted billions of dollars from Ethiopia. Who has not been looting? Mubarek of Egypt,Benali of Tunisia? Who? Every ruler who is servant of global capitalism is a looter. That is how the system inherently works? By looting, yes by looting !!!.Forget our usual rhetoric of economics that is demand-vs-supply determines price. That is for the naive and gullible mass public consumption for the sake of exam!!! And hence it is the system, global capitalism, that is rather stupid not Ato Meles and TPLF as such. And hence the system insidiously lulls and exploits such treacherous stooges who are not nationalist as instruments of its internal inherent workings. And hence whenever the opposition Diaspora is making movements regarding the fate of Ethiopia and Ethiopians, then it has to seriously take in to consideration the burning issue of this global capitalism deep-rooted and multifaceted scenarios. The entire issue regarding Ato Meles and other 3rd world countries is not only a matter bogus democracy through election or the known familiar dictatorship, and it is rather more intricate than this and hence more related to this global governing social order.
    And hence the silence of Diaspora Ethiopian Intellectuals regarding global-capitalism, while to the contrary always shouting about Ato Meles, whom we already know who he is, is then sometimes sheer dishonesty and mainly sheer ignorance committed by the Diaspora. And hence why we confuse the poor innocent Ethiopian mass regarding democracy and dictatorship, while the system of global capitalism is even depriving land and basic foods? If global capitalism, under the disguise of bogus democracy, is depriving land and basic foods as is the case of Ato Meles who is talking about democracy, then what is any rational reason to condemn the nationalist previous x-regimes, who do not lull us about democracy, for not being democrats? We have to be wise in that global capitalism is so slick and crafty and hence, under the disguise of the illusion and fantasy of bogus democracy, it has managed for so long in deceiving let alone the poor ordinary mass, but also even those highly educated but naive and gullible intellectuals. And hence I dare to say that there will come a time where the mass will be so fed up of and sick of those stereotypical politicians who simply hype bogus democracy that is incoherent with existing realities. And finally I am afraid that the Diaspora is some how losing wisdom and audacity to condemn and expose the evils of Global Capitalism and hence its stereotypical cliché moves against only Ato Meles and TPLF is like ‘አህያውን ፈርቶ ዳውላውን”
    And hence we are in very moment of time where we need critical thinking and paradigm shift rather than moving in an already established paradigm setup of global capitalism. And hence in addition to fighting Ato Meles and TPLF then time to come out of the cocoons of the paradigm setups of global capitalism. So many of us are confused in that the poor mass have been fighting two evils. Ato Meles and others similar are the ones whom we see them in the forefront vividly on the nearby front acting on the stage, but Global Capitalism is the one that is lurking in the background that is writing the scripts and directing the stages behind the curtain. And when we are able to scrutinize global capitalism and expose its evils and its barbaric pervasive chaos it has been creating globally, then we will become the voices of the visionaries indeed.

    God bless Ethiopia and the whole world!!!

  3. aha!
    | #3

    Girum! Your remark on the effect global capitalism, and putting the blame on USA and UK on economic development in Ethiopia does not contradict the lessons learned from the “Political Forum”, which does not adress the constitutional frame work of ethnic federalism, secessionism and totaliarinism, that do not allow for free market capitalism and democracy in Ethiopia for the silent, silenced but not silent majority of Ethiopia, that allows the exploitation, economic and political stranggle hold of the country’s resources by TPLF and TPLF affiliated enterprises, cadres and foreign corporations.

    Much in the same that epigenomic factors control the outcome of individual trats, so is gene mutation and geographic locations affect the variations of those traits, which does not negate your view point.

    But for Ethiopia, Ethiopians of all party affiliations need to dismantle first and formost ethnic federalism, secessionism and totaliarinism to allow for free market capitalism, rather than state capitalism in East Asian style with the mantra of economic development before democracy by TPLF and TPLF and TPLF affiliated enterprises and foreign corporations, foreign corporations, who posed to the degradation of the pristine land and water resources, without alleviating the shortage of food supply.

    The dismatling of ethnic federalism, secessionism and totaliarinism which anti-theses to free market capitalism and individual freedom, liberty and equality to have precedence over ethnic and secessionist rights is resolved through non-violent uprising to freedom, liberty and equality of individuals to initiate a democratic rule rather than ethnoc cratic rule and or/ethic dictatorship, which at moment is ethnic minority rule under the present constitutional frame work, serving as the operating system with its tools and utilities serving to help that operating system to persist in its operation. The cases in point are: non-independent, parliament and judicary branches of the government, the permeating influence of TPLF on security, federal police, and the military forces and card holding members and the teletafi parties and their support of the party are the internal factors (genetic mutations) that need dealt with to replace it with free market capitalism to which the impact of your global capitalism makes sense.

  4. aha!
    | #4

    Correction: Replace “gentic mutations”to gene mutations.

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