THE OROMIAN CIVIL RESISTANCE DAY

THE OROMO RESISTANCE DAY

According to the Oromian Calender, November 09, is the annual Oromo Civil resistance Day in which the Oromians commemorate the peaceful struggle of Oromo nation and the popular nation-wide uprising in Oromia against subjugation. Nationalists in Oromia and around the globe commemorate the popular student uprising known as Fincila Diddaa Gabrummaa (meaning Revolt Against Subjugation) that broke out on November 09, 2005 following the failed national ‘election’ of 2005 in which the Oromo was denied any meaningful representation.  It was on this day that the Oromo people heave their liberation struggle to a new height, covering the entire Oromo land in a highly coordinated manner that has never been seen before. On this day, the entire Oromo population accepted the call made by its vanguard liberation organization, OLF, and staged protests against the repressive rule of the TPLF/EPRDF government by raising legitimate demands. Our people have shown to the enemy and to the entire world that our struggle has grown in maturity, size and extent. November 9 will be remembered forever as a landmark in the history of the Oromo people.

The sustainability, tenacity and dynamism of the newly invigorated struggle of the Oromo people that started on November 9, 2005 has shaken the very foundation of the regime on power. It has demonstrated once again that no repressive machinery, however elaborate and violently employed, can hold down the voices of freedom and liberty. The Oromo people have finally grasped that for their legitimate cause for freedom to be heard at home and abroad, they have to get organized, speak up and be ready to pay the ultimate price for justice. The year old fire that could not be extinguished by the TPLF regime proved that the Oromo people are not intimidated any longer by mass arrest, torture, and killings in their struggle for liberation. In the past, our inability to conduct a coordinated popular uprising throughout Oromia gave the regime the opportunity to crash isolated protests using brutal force. The current strategy of coordinated, sustained and widespread uprising has severely frustrated the regime. The movement is gaining momentum by attracting sympathy and support even from Oromos who are serving the government as civil servants and members of the armed forces. Important lessons have been drawn from the last year experience.

The popular uprising has given a severe blow to the repressive machinery of the regime and drained its morale. As a result the regime is gripped by a crisis from which it is unable to disentangle itself. Last year’s popular uprising has been very successful in promoting the Oromo struggle. We believe this year’s will enable the Oromo to wrap up the journey towards freedom with total victory. That is the popular resistance should continue with much higher coordination, vigor and intensity. Oromia being the breadbasket of the region, the Oromo need to, this time around, more aggressively and systematically flex its economic muscle as it does its demographic weight.

One of the shortcomings of past efforts was the inability to involve all sectors of society. This should be corrected and all sectors of the Oromo society. In addition the horizon of the struggle need to expand as to involve all oppressed peoples of Ethiopia to jointly usher in a new era of freedom and democracy.

In memory of November 9, 2005 our fallen heroes and heroines who gave their precious lives in the popular uprising of 2005, let us together sing the songs of our martyrs “maal dhaamanii?” (What message did they leave behind?). And let the sweet song of freedom rise from all the corners, all villages, and houses.

The Oromo Civil resistance is a peaceful way for ordinary Oromo people to fight for their rights, freedom and justice without using violence. The Oromo people engaged in civil resistance use diverse tactics, such as strikes, boycotts, mass demonstrations and other actions, to cause wide-ranging social, political and economic change.

Around the world, the Oromo civil resistance has been called by different names—FDG- Fincila Diddaa Garbummaa, Diddaa Ummataa, Diddaa, Falmii Karaa Nagaa, which means nonviolent struggle, non-violent struggle against subjugation, people power, political defiance, and civic mobilization—but regardless of which term is used, the fundamental dynamics of civil resistance remain essentially the same.

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