Live Updates of the Andenet Officials visit coverage in Dallas – Source:

July 27th, 2008 Print Print Email Email

9:30 PM Central Time

The Town hall meeting ended at around 7:40 PM. Attendees were happy and very encouraged by what they have heard. They have admired the confidence, eloquence an debth knowldge of the speakers. All questions asked were professionally and calmly anwered.

The town hall meeting has been very educational and very inspiring. Ethiopians were challenged to do more for their countries and filled with hope and “we can do it attitudes.. (more…)

9:30 PM Central Time

The Town hall meeting ended at around 7:40 PM. Attendees were happy and very encouraged by what they have heard. They have admired the confidence, eloquence an debth knowldge of the speakers. All questions asked were professionally and calmly anwered.

The town hall meeting has been very educational and very inspiring. Ethiopians were challenged to do more for their countries and filled with hope and “we can do it attitudes..

Tickets were sold for special dinners with the UDJ officials.

7:00 PM Central Time

The Questions and Answers session is still ongoining.

“Is the peaceful struggle a realiable struggle ? ” was one of the question.
The answer from the UDJ officials is that one should not easily abandon the struggle because of some obstacles. “There will be obstacles. There will be sacrifices. However we cannot afford to go away from the peaceful struggle” the UDJ officials explained. “The other option has been our methind of struggles for generations. We know that method. We know what that method has brought on us. We cannot go back to the old strategy that failed us and made us poor and miserable.” they said.

The UDJ leaders confidently expressed that with effective organization and patience the peaceful struggle will achieve its goal.

“WE BELIEVE IN THE POWER OF THE PEOPLE” they said. What is needed is to tap and effectively use this power. The peaceful struggle will just do that they expressed.

6:30 PM

Questions and Answers Session has started 10 minutes ago. The first question is about the future effectiveness of the UDJ. The Professor answered that they are closely studying the situation and are working ona road map that takes the UDJ to 2010 and beyond.


The other questions is about the Ethio-Sudan Border. The Professor is in great debth detailing in a professional way the situations and the historical backgrounds.

6:00 PM

Ato Asrat Tasse has completed his brief remarks. Now it is break.

In his speech Ato Asrat Tasse noted that the division of Kinijit did greatly damaged many Ethiopians. He said that even he UDJ themselves have bleeded from the inside by what has happened within Kinijit.

However the secretary of the UDJ declared that after all these problems and crisis they have come back more organized and more strengthen to mobilize Ethiopians for the struggle to bring peace and democracy in Ethiopia.

“What have we learned from the problems Kinijit had ? ” Ato Asrat Tasse asked and elaborately and concisely tried to give answers to the public so that they can see “the past mistakes and damages as :blessing in disguse”.

Lessons learned:


The culture of follow individuals is one factor for the problem of Kinijit. We Ethiopians temd to follow individuals and come together because we are friends or relatives ” Ato Asrat described. However with the UDJ we have emphasized on the need to come together on principles.The way we are organized is of the goals we want to accomplish , the values and principles of the party. Therefore if individuals made mistakes it will create to quikcly fix hte problem accordingly. (TO COME TOGETHER AROUND VALUES AN PRINCIPLES)


Ethiopia has so many children that are willing to even sacrifice their life. When one person for some reason leave the struggle, there must not be a pause. There need to be continuity of the struggle. The struggle must not depend on individuals. Therefore to make sure that there is continuity and the struggle is effectively sustained institutions must be build explained Ato Asrat Tasse. T


A Party that believes and struggles to bring democracy at national level cannot achieve its goals unless it is itself democractic stressed Ato Asrat Tasse. Kinijit , contrary to its by-laws was not democratic. Therefore the UDJ have set up a mechanism where everyone is accountable and where the public is ware of what is going on.

“There may be disagreement. However by learning the culture of opening up the issues, we will let the public play a big role” ato Asrat explained.

“POLITICS BELONGS TO THE PEOPLE” said Ato Asrat Tasse as he concluded his speech.

5:45 PM

Professor Mesfin has now completed his very educational and inspirational speech. He eloquently and with great confidence addressed the public. Attendees have been attentively listening and some have been taking notes.

In his speech the professor talked about the upcoming 2010 election, the need for Ethiopians to be engaged in their country’s affair, the need to be come together and to be united even if we have our own differences.

Regarding the 2010 Election the professor explained that no decision has been made. Some other basic questions ought to be answered before answering whether the UDJ will attend the 2010 election or not. If UDJ has to participate in the 2010 election and confront the EPRDF there need to be a condition under which it can fairly and confidently compete.For this there need to be organizational and financial strength the professor explained.

“Is UDJ well organized ? Does it have offices in various regions ? Can it train and dispatch election observers in the 40000 election centers ? ” asked the Professor. These questions and others ought to get answers before deciding about the 2010 election according to Professor Mesfin.

He said the opression of the regime shall continue and should be expected. While he was in Kaliti prison for two years, he tought the moral and courage of the public would be greatly damaged. However as he was out from Kaliti he noticed that the efforts of the weyanes to crush the spirit has failed.

However, he stressed that hey will keep on with their oppression but we have to keep on with our efforts as well.

Yes, there may be some disappointments. Individuals may make mistakes. However we cannot walk out from th struggle because we were disappointed by individuals. “OUR COUNTRY IS MORE THAN ANYONE. WE CANNOT WALK OUT FROM ETHIOPIA ,FROM ISSUES THAT AFFECT ETHIOPIA, FROM THE STRUGGLE TO BRING DEMOCRACY IN ETHIOPIA ” professor Mesfin passionately expressed.

4:50 PM

Prof Mesfin Woldemariam the feature speaker of the day, is now addressing the public.
He opened his speech with a prayer. “You are divided. And we are divided. Would it be better if we stayed in Kaliti” he then said frankly describing the situation of the democratc forces.

He shared to the public why he joined the UDJ. Tough he might have differences in political views of the then KInijit now UDJ, he stressed that he joind UDJ to fulfil one big objective: to make the people of Ethiopia the source of power.

Some may claim that Ethiopians are not ready for democracy. The Professor, mentioning the May 7 big CU rallies, explained that the people of Ethiopia is ready for democracy. He said that the May 7 historic rally has send a powerful signal not only to the regime but also to the whole world, that the peole of Ethiopia knows democracy, and is civil. No person was injured and no properties were damaged when more than 3 million gathered at one place Professor Mesfin explained.

4:30 PM

Even tought It is more than 100 degree Farenheit in Dallas, ethiopians have come to the public town hall meeting in large numbers. The two UDJ delegates have now entered the meeting room. Ethiopians welcomed them with great ethusiasm and grand ovation.

Ato Tesfaye Afework , organization affairs chief of the UDJ Dallas Chapter opened the meeting and welcomed the public. He then invited Ato Dejene Assayeh, the democratically elected chairman of the Dallas Andenet Support group.

Within the last hour, both Professor Mesfin and Ato Asrat Tasse gave interviews to the Ethiopian Community Radio Station of Dallas. In the interview, Ato Asrat was asked why the need of having a new name. Ato Asrat eloquently explained that the regime illegally gave the name and election symbol of Kinijit to other groups. Instead of spending time and energy on a long and protracted fight at the court, decision was made to move forward with a new name “Andenet For Democracy and Justice”. Ato Asrat explained that the people is well aware of the situation is is very supportive of theeffort the UDJ is doing.

Prof Mesfin in his turn was asked about the ethio sudan border issue. He recommended that Ethiopians in Diaspora form a task force of experts that can go Ethiopia and gather concrete and physical data.

3:15 PM central Time

The visiting UDJ officials shall be guests for the weekly Ethiopian local radio station. They will have the opportunity to share their visions and their missions to Ethiopians who are residing in the great Dallas area.

We shall report to you as we get more updates on the content of the radio interview and more latest developments from Dallas.

The meeting shall officially start at 4:00 PM.

2:00 PM Central Time

Professor Mesfin Woldemariam and Ato Asrat Tasse has arrived in Dallas Fort Worth International airport this morning. They will address Ethiopians in the Dallas Area this afternoon.

From officials of the Andenet Support group in Dallas, the meeting shall focus more on answering and clarifying any questions or issues the public may have on the current situation in Ethiopia. Information is power. As Ethiopians are aware of the full picture of where their country is, the more will be their willingness to engage in their country’s affair.

It is also expected that the ethio-border issue will also be raised. It is to be known that Prof. Mesfin woldemariam, an ethiopian geography expert, has been on of the 6 experts who studied and provided reports about the border issues with Ethiopia.

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