Daily Archives: April 7, 2020
Ethiopia: Release detained journalists and opposition politicians immediately
(Amnesty International, 7 April 2020, The Ethiopian authorities must immediately release two journalists from the Oromia News Network and three Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) officials who remain in custody a week after charges against them were dropped and the court ordered their release on 31 March.
The authorities must desist from this intimidation, harassment and arbitrary detention and immediately and unconditionally release these five individuals.
Deprose Muchena, Amnesty International’s Director for East and Southern Africa
“The Ethiopian authorities continue to detain five people long after the court ordered their release. The authorities must desist from this intimidation, harassment and arbitrary detention and immediately and unconditionally release these five individuals,” said Deprose Muchena, Amnesty International’s Director for East and Southern Africa.
The five were charged with taking a photo at the Burayu police station, and for traffic offenses relating to an incident where a vehicle rammed into the back of the police car the arresting officers were using. The prosecutor later dropped the charges, stating none of the alleged acts were crimes under the country’s criminal law.
The police however continue to detain the individuals claiming there were irregularities with the names on their identification documents. However, they have not presented the five in court with any new charges.
The detained are Batir Filae, OLF Central Committee member; Gadaa Gabisa, OLF political officer; and Bilisuma Ararsa, OLF member. With them are Desu Dula, the Vice Director of the Oromia News Network (ONN) and Wako Nole, a journalist with the network.
For more information on the mounting harassment of OLF members and supporters, see links below.
Vendor killed after police attack opposition supporters in Oromia
Authorities crackdown on opposition supporters with mass arrests
Success requires the removal of an obstacle, and OPDO is an obstacle
(A4O, Opinion, 7 April 2020) Professor Asfaw Bayana’s article titled “I must abandon a false hope now” prompted me to contemplate the meaning of hope and further led me to conclude that our greatest hope comes not from the OPDO but from the knowledge that we shall win our freedom soon or later.
For centuries, believers had foretold that a savior who would redeem them from their sins and take them to a place called Heaven will come someday. Such a story represents the hope that people would rise from death and live forever.
Likewise, we pay tribute to all Oromian martyrs, to the suffered, to the jailed, to the tortured, to the exiled, and to those Qeerroos/Qarrees who are still falling at the battlefields being shot by Abiy Ahmed’s killing squads being guided by the hope that the vision of those genius Oromians who articulated the mission of the OLF will become true someday. This means we hope that someday, we are going to build free Oromia, a free state that will accommodate all the needs of its citizens.
To get there, we just have to believe that there are tremendous sources of hope beyond our enemies’ abilities, strength, and capacity.
I am certain that freedom is possible with surety hope for better governance, yea, a liberated country free enough even for our killers. But we must press forward with a steadfastness in our ability to free ourselves, having confidence in ourselves and enduring to the end.
The OPDO is a simple obstacle and removing an obstacle is part of the process of achieving any task. The reason that made the OPDO an obstacle to our freedom can be readily understood by looking at the situation that produced her in the first place. There was a larger global purpose behind the birth of the OPDO back in the 1990s and the same thing is true about the installation of Abiy Ahmed in power in 2018.
That means False Hope is trusting that the OPDO is going to respect the false promises she made just 2 years ago. What we need to know is that, if we act now, the desired freedom will be fulfilled in the future.
The OPDO has been fighting against the Oromians believing that our hopes and aspirations would bring them hopelessness. They understood that If the Oromo people are free, their Nafxanya parents will lose control over the power and economic advantages that they currently enjoy.
Contrary to their selfish reason however, we can still believe in ourselves, fully persuaded that our sheer struggle would help us reach our destination. To do so, we must constantly ask ourselves;
• What was the purpose for which the OLF was formed?
• What was the OLF goal?
• Why did all those Oromians were killed, jailed, exiled, tortured?
• Why do we expect fairness from the enemy spy who had been killing us for the past 27 years?
• What is the message we are sending to the youth by expecting democracy from the enemy?
• What is our responsibility in helping the Oromo youth understand the mission of the OLF?
As an Oromo intellectual, each of us can teach the Oromo youth that success requires the removal of an obstacle and the OPDO is an obstacle.
Hope is an Anchor of the Soul,
Liberation is our Goal!