Salute to Kinijit, Andnet, Kinijit ! – By Kuchiye
Forward with Andnet!
As a party that sprung up at a momentous phase in Ethiopian history, there is no doubt in anybody’s mind that the Kinijit movement ushered an entirely new era in the way we look at politics and politicians. Reason rather than rhetoric, reconciliation rather than protracted conflict, unity rather than fragmentation became lingua franca of choice. Parties who found themselves trapped in the bygone days of sloganeering and empty rhetoric lost both respect and followers. (more…)
Forward with Andnet!
As a party that sprung up at a momentous phase in Ethiopian history, there is no doubt in anybody’s mind that the Kinijit movement ushered an entirely new era in the way we look at politics and politicians. Reason rather than rhetoric, reconciliation rather than protracted conflict, unity rather than fragmentation became lingua franca of choice. Parties who found themselves trapped in the bygone days of sloganeering and empty rhetoric lost both respect and followers.
After decades of gridlock, the country and its people wanted to see fresh and forward looking direction. That was what Kinijit offered and that was why millions followed it. Kinjit elaborated on the political, economic and social realities of the country like no other party in the past. Its approach was as candid as it was constructive.
The party’s vision was, and still is, based on the ever so exact premise that what really matters in this day and age is today and the future rather than the past. No country that volunteered to be prisoner of its past was ever able to break the shackles of poverty or conflict and usher an era of stability and wealth. As they say, the past is only as good as we can derive lessons from.
Unjustified but understandable frustration
Given our long unfulfilled dream for an Ethiopia where human and democratic rights are respected and where the people are endowed with good governance, it is not difficult to comprehend why many grow impatient and take respite on the sideline following a political hiccup the like of which was experienced by Kinijit. However, we should not lose sight of the fact that winning democracy and building a stable society necessarily requires travel through arduous roads – with lots of bumps twists and turns on the way. Remembering this painful truth will guard us from undue frustration and from an ever looming withdrawal syndrome.
“Our greatest glory is not in never falling, but in rising every time we fall”. I will never get over this omnipresent Confucian proverb.
Continued involvement in Andnet
The greatest gift we can give to 80 million compatriot Ethiopians and the lasting memorial we can erect to those who paid in dear life during the 2005 atrocity, is by pledging to continue our involvement at levels of our individual choice. No amount of propaganda aimed at portraying Kinijit as a fractured organization should break our will. What Kinijit has to go through the last two years can only be considered a minor set back that will be rectified as soon as the party finalizes its regrouping effort and starts to operate through the length and breadth of the country. Despite the massive effort of the government aimed at infiltrating and dividing the party, despite the elaborate intimidation targeting Kinijit’s supporters and despite the relentless campaign to paint the party in all kinds of shades, Kinijit and its vision remain deeply engrained in the blood system of Ethiopians. You just can’t erase a popular spirit, can you?
Blessed are those..
Any nation will be considered blessed when it is bestowed with leaders who not only understand the arduous nature of democratic struggle, but are also willing to put their own lives and the lives of their loved ones in harms way in pursuit of the dreams of millions. That is exactly what most of Kinijit’s leaders chose to do; first by prevailing over a traumatic prison experience, then by deciding to regroup and continue with the peaceful but always dangerous struggle. In my book, this is “paying the ultimate sacrifice”. These, in my book, are the real heroes.
How about the name “Andnet”?
For me and for many others it is the story of the “Silicha” and the “Qelqelo”. I saw wisdom in the leader’s decision to change the party’s name so the struggle could forge ahead without further delay. By so doing, they foiled EPRDF’s trap which was aimed at bogging the party in a Kangaroo court battle where the winner will always be EPRDF. True to its principle, Andnet will demonstrate to our citizens and to the world at large that that the peaceful struggle will continue even as the repression tightens and the political environment gets more suffocating.
The re-inauguration of Kinijit as Andnet will create a vitally necessary impetus the democratic struggle so desperately yearns. Andnet will remain in the face of EPRDF, will expose the government’s excesses, will show the way, will serve as a shining star in a country where the large majority of the population lives under looming draught, war and unparalleled economic and political hardship.
We salute the General Assembly of “Andnet for Democracy and Justice Party”, its participants and the Ethiopian people at large on yet another milestone that will be spearheaded by a party that has grown wiser and stronger. June 14, 2008 will be yet another landmark in Ethiopian politics.