Abiy Ahmed – a man on a mission to …

By Mootii Baarboo, March 10, 2020

Abiy Ahmed rose to power in Ethiopia on the back of the sacrifices made by Oromo nationalists, in particular those who gave their lives resisting the oppressive regimes of Haile Selassie, the Derg and EPRDF. The irony was that Abiy (who usurped power as a result of the Oromo struggle) was part of one of these regimes, the EPRDF. And, again ironically, the Oromo genuinely believed and hoped Abiy would advance their cause, not realizing he has such disdain for everything Oromo, including despising his own Oromo father.

Abiy Ahmed Ali is a gifted person at indoctrinating people to fulfill his ego of remaining in power. With his skills of appearing plausible, whilst being totally the opposite of what he is saying, Abiy uses every means available to him, without having the slightest consideration for the consequences of his actions. He is someone who does not refrain from any taboo as long as his thirst for power is quenched. There is no ‘safuu’ in his Oromo lexicon.

So, who could blame the Oromo for taking Abiy at face value and entrusting him with the task of being at the helm to guide the struggle for self-rule? With his charming smile, sweet words and empty promises, Abiy has all the tools to convince any society, let alone Oromo, who by their very nature know no sabotage or political intricacies and backbiting like some others. Hence, one can forgive the Oromo people for taking Abiy to their hearts in the beginning.

However, one person I do not feel sympathy for in relation to Abiy is Obbo Lamma Megersa, who has become the con man’s first victim. With his political awareness and ability to play devil’s advocate, he became ‘addicted to Ethiopia’, only to gauge neftenya’s support in the battle against the Woyane. If beggars belief how Obbo Lamma failed to recognise from the outset the true nature of the narcissist Abiy. Even to a layman, Abiy’s fake smiles, insincere facial expressions, and many of his acts and behaviours are unreal and pretentious.

What is even more surprising about Abiy is his ability to get away with all these ill deeds, even today, when he is in power. For example, he has admitted using his governmental position to spy for the opposition. His espionage was for two organisations with different goals! No one has questioned him in parliament, in court or in public over this. Abiy has made conflicting and inflammatory remarks praising or denigrating people in different arenas. Again, he has not been brought to account. Imagine, similar cases coming to light against political officials in developed countries. The fate of a leader with such crimes in Europe or America is at the very least decided in the law courts. But in Ethiopia, the leader is often praised for his actions and allowed to commit even more atrocities.

Abiy’s mission in all of this is only to maintain power. He is a power maniac who tries to achieve his goals at the expense of anything, including selling out Oromo. In fact, being a shrewd person, he has surrounded himself with die-hard Oromo-haters just to help achieve his dreams. Arguably, the Ethiopian palace has never been filled with such neo-neftenyas and Oromo adversaries as it has during Abiy’s tenure. His calculations are not difficult to understand. He is using one stone to kill two birds simultaneously: that is, to silence the Habesha while keeping the Oromo firmly under his grasp.

So far, so good for Abiy because he has lasted thus far. But, history will put everything in perspective sooner rather than later. The Oromo people have no time to wait for history to be mis-recorded, though, as has characteristically been the case in the Ethiopian empire. They are now ready to write their own history. They have been crying for generations to be their own masters, to govern their own business, to write their own destiny, to be treated equally in their country, and to use their language to worship and as an official language alongside Amharic. Abiy, who is filled with animosity against Oromo has worked very hard to derail Oromo’s quest to gain all their legitimate rights.

Oromo should say now, enough is enough! They should rise in unison to demand what is legally theirs. Nothing can be given for free and Oromo should not expect any positive outcome from galtuu, as Abiy really is one. The qeerroo and qarree, who gallantly stood against the Woyane are once again called upon to rise up and free the Oromo society from the tyranny.

One final point on Afaan Oromo. The issue of Afaan Oromo becoming a federal language must not be negotiated or left at the mercy of neo-neftenya’s decision. Afaan Oromo needs to be a working language in Finfinne, the centre and heart of Oromia. How on earth can it be right for the Oromo to be asked to use a foreign language – yes, a foreign language – in their own homeland? This is despicable in the twenty-first century. It has to be a political decision, not a decision imposed on us by our neftenya adversaries. And it needs to be implemented now, not delayed for another year, let alone ten or fifteen years as they have prescribed for us.

It is really sad to learn Abiy has set up a group of neftenya academics to ‘study’ the feasibility of Afaan Oromo becoming a federal language. The Oromo proverb comes to mind: “Woraabbessatti harree hin fe’an”. The nafetenya academicians in question are well known for demonising the use of Afaan Oromo for education, in particular the adoption of qubee. Can you expect a balanced recommendation about Afaan Oromo or even about the Oromo people from these bigots? I can’t. The fate of Oromo and Afaan Oromo must be decided by Oromo and by Oromo alone! How belittling and degrading of Oromo it is for Abiy to assign the neftenya to make a recommendation about the possibility of Afaan Oromo becoming one of the federal languages. I leave this to the reader’s judgement.

The fact is that if Abiy had been the leader of the EPRDF in the early 1990’s, qubee would not have been endorsed as an Oromo writing system. He would have done anything in his power to have sabotaged the adoption of the qubee. In fact, if he is allowed to continue in his post, Abiy wouldn’t stop from attempting to reverse the little progress made so far in the development and use of Afaan Oromo. Oromo! Wake up! You cannot expect anything positive whilst Abiy remains in power. The sooner you get rid of him, the quicker your freedom will be realised.

Injifannoon kan saba Oromo

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