By Zerihun Shumete
The Süddeutsche newspaper reports on its 20.03.2016 publication that the Ethiopians are under severe drought and dictatorial threat. The drought is caused by the effect of El Nino and is affecting millions of lives not only in Ethiopia but also in other eastern and southern Africa countries. The cruel, oppressive and massacre facts of the 25 years long dictatorial Ethiopian regime has been exposed by the El Nino incidents.
“Dozens protesters were reportedly killed by security forces, hundreds were apparently arrested.” („Dutzende Demonstranten sollen von Sicherheitskräften getötet worden sein, Hunderte wurden offenbar festgenommen.“) (Home > Panorama > Naturkatastrophen > Ostafrika – Eingeholt von der Vergangenheit 21. März 2016, 19:00 Uhr Ostafrika). I really appreciate the writer, Isabel Pfaff (for the Süddeutsche newspaper), for attempting to reflect to the world that the current Ethiopian ruling party has no mercy of shooting ,killing and jailing peaceful demonstrators . However, what the writer has not dug up was the fact that the blood of thousands, not only dozens, innocents Ethiopians has been shed by the cruel and dictatorial current Ethiopian government. (Ethiopian security forces have killed at least 140 people taking part in mass anti-government demonstrations since November… http://www.bbc.com/news/world-africa-35261314). The tragedy part is that the government security forces shot and killed these peaceful demonstrators in the day time. This was not the only incident the government took such horrible actions on peaceful demonstrators. The 2005 general election dispute led to the death of hundreds civilians and imprisonment of thousands by this merciless ruling party (EPDRF). “It said that 193 people had been killed, including 40 teenagers. Six policemen were also killed and some 763 people injured.” (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/africa/6064638.stm). This evil action of the government was not taking place only in Addis Ababa or Oromiaya. It has also left unforgettable scar on the people of Amahra,Gambella, Ogadien and Lower Omo valley.
“And that’s not the only problem. Ethiopia is one of those countries which have massively sold in recent years land or leased to investors. This so called land grabbing is highly controversial. ” („Und das ist nicht das einzige Problem. Äthiopien gehört zu jenen Staaten, die in den vergangenen Jahren massiv Land an Investoren verkauft oder verpachtet haben. Dieses sogenannte land grabbing ist höchst umstritten. “).(Home > Panorama > Naturkatastrophen > Ostafrika – Eingeholt von der Vergangenheit 21. März 2016, 19:00 Uhr Ostafrika). Selling or leasing lands to investors whether they are indigenous or foreign is not a problem as long as it benefits the country and its citizens. Unfortunately what we are experiencing in Ethiopia is quite the opposite. People are forced (militarily) to leave their land, which is the main and most of the time the only source of income, so that the government can sell the land to investors. The people would not get enough compensation for the land that is forcefully taken from them. But the corrupted government officials keep on fattening their banks. Protesting this drama of land grabbing and selling, several people went out on streets hoping that their voices would be heard and justice would be given. However, the government welcomed them with bullets. This irresponsible and cruel killings of civilians by the government happened in Oromia, Gambella, Amahra , Omo Vally and Ogadine. “But according to a host of NGO’s and policy advocates, including Oxfam, Human Rights Watch and the Oakland Institute, the true consequences of the land grabs are almost all negative. They say that in order to make such huge areas available for foreign investors to grow foodstuffs and bio-fuels for export – and in direct contravention of Ethiopia’s obligations under international law – the authorities are displacing hundreds of thousands of indigenous peoples, abusing their human rights, destroying their traditions, trashing the environment, and making them more dependent on food aid than ever before.” (http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/peopleandpower/2014/01/ethiopia-land-sale-20141289498158575.html)
„Äthiopien ist formal eine Demokratie, doch faktisch gehört es zu den autoritärsten Staaten in ganz Afrika. Seit 1991 regiert dieselbe Clique, entsprungen aus den Rebellengruppen, die damals die kommunistische Militärjunta des Derg stürzten. Sie haben aus Äthiopien eine Art Entwicklungsdiktatur gemacht – strikt kontrolliert, aber wirtschaftlich erfolgreich.“ (“Ethiopia is formally democratic, but in fact it is one of the most authoritarian states in Africa. Since 1991, ruled the same clique, came from the rebel groups who then overthrew the communist military junta of the Derg. They have from Ethiopia made a kind of development dictatorship – strictly controlled, but commercially successful.”) (Home > Panorama > Naturkatastrophen > Ostafrika – Eingeholt von der Vergangenheit 21. März 2016, 19:00 Uhr Ostafrika).
I appreciate the writer, Isabel Pfaff, for bringing the truth into the light that the current Ethiopian government is the most authoritarian regime in Africa. However, I hate to oppose but this regime is one of the most authoritarian and dictatorial state in the world. In the recent the so called “general election “(which I call it a fake election just like the previous ones) this ruling party has won 100%. Is it not difficult to comprehend a clean 100% win, especially in a country like Ethiopia where more than 80 various ethnic groups live? The last time I remember having 100% win was the dictator Sadam Hussein in 2002. (http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/2331951.stm).
The world had given the Ethiopians people deaf ears when we were shouting for help from dictatorial and killer government. Now all a sudden the world seems to talk about giving the Ethiopian people hand in order to curve the drought and its consequences. We, the Ethiopians, were opposing the current regime because its rule was leading us into catastrophe. Journalists, politicians, religious leaders and human right activists have attempted to direct the current government into the right path, i.e., peace, justice, democracy, respect of human rights and reduction of corruption. However, these people were / are imprisoned, shot or exiled. I really appreciate the newspaper Süddeutsche newspaper and the writer , Isabel Pfaff, for reflecting the real dictatorial rule the Ethiopian people have put up for more than 25 years. A government by the people for the people could easily control and solve the problems caused by El Nino. Unfortunately we Ethiopians are not lucky to have such a government. All the westerns and USA support the current Ethiopian regime knowing the fact that it leads the citizens in to poverty, disaster and war. It is very ironic for me to read on this newspaper about the help needed to tackle the El Nino problem in Ethiopia. Why have not international media given attention when we cry for freedom, equality, justice and democracy? Why is it all a sudden these media interested to cover the drought and its consequences? The citizens are not only in desperate need of food but also freedom.
Source: (Home > Panorama > Naturkatastrophen > Ostafrika – Eingeholt von der Vergangenheit 21. März 2016, 19:00 Uhr Ostafrika).