Gaado Furra Has Been Peacefully And Successfully Finalised In Sidama Capital, Hawassa.
Via Denboba Natie, April 09, 2019
The Sidama mothers and daughters this morning (starting at 5:30 am local time) have spoken loud and clear during their demonstration named after the Sidama’s ancient queen ‘Furra’. The streets of the Sidama capital, Hawassa were beautifully decorated and filled with peaceful, but strongly commanding voices of over a million Sidama mothers and daughters and their cause Oromo and various nations’ women supporters. They were loudly voicing their demands carrying banners clearly written with the demands of the Sidama for a regional statehood. The demonstration named ‘Gaado Furra’- literal meaning ‘Mission or Operation queen Furra’ was planned, organised, coordinated and led entirely by the Sidama women and girls. The objective is twofold:-
1. Demanding the Ethiopian government to Stop explicit and implicit Sidama demonising national and international campaign masterminded by anti-Sidama elements instead respecting the Sidama nation by stopping oblivious ignorance of its cause by giving deaf ears and blind eyes to the on-going peaceful demand of the nation and
2. Demanding the government to urgently fix a date for the Sidama national regional State referendum that has been so far kept aside.
Moreover, previously, the Sidama Ejjeetto (Sidama’s non-political civil society nationwide movement comprised of a highly educated and all segments of Sidama) has called for a series of peaceful demonstrations to demand the Ethiopian government to fix the date for the Sidama referendum that enables the nation to assert its national regional statehood. The previously upheld demonstrations named ‘Gaddo I’ and ‘Gaado II’ were peacefully and successfully conducted on February 21, 2019 demonstration and three days ‘Stay-in’ call between March 13 and 15 for the same grand Sidama national cause.
During today’s and past 2 Gaado peaceful Sidama-wide demonstrations, the Sidama nation fully took over the responsibility of maintaining peace and security in the Sidama region by totally rejecting the interferences of federal security apparatuses; known for their part in State-terrorism for the past 27 years- including the Sidama Looqqe massacre of May 24, 2002 (where over 69 Sidama civilians were executed by these groups) and the recent June 2018 conflicts where about three dozen lives were taken by those who claim for maintaining security in Sidama land whilst playing the very opposite. Meanwhile, the Ethiopian government remains obliviously ignoring the Sidama’s peaceful demand that has been repeatedly brought to its attention in an exceptionally civilised manner defying all plans of anti-Sidama groups who have masterminded to destabilise Sidama with objective of inflicting pain on Sidama people with wider ramifications.
This is the time when the Sidama mothers and daughters started to question the oblivious silence of federal government in responding to the Sidama’s constitutionally guaranteed quests for a national regional self-rule that has been unanimously demanded by the Sidama Zone on July 18, 2018; hence ‘Gaado Furra’ was born.
Cognizant of the oblivious silence of the federal government to the Sidama nation’s quests; the Sidama women and girls took their own initiative to come up with the idea of Gaado Furra (ancient Sidama queen venerated by the Sidama women ever since she has existed) to voice their disappointment with oblivious silence of the Ethiopian government. Therefore, the Sidama mothers and daughters have undertaken the process of meticulous planning, efficient coordination of the call, assurance of security arrangements for the demonstrators and the wider society living in Sidama land- to show the world that, the Sidama has got rich traditional and civilised political system and socio-cultural attributes that benefit not only Ethiopia/Africa, but also the world in the aspects of tremendous potential the Women possess.
Today, in Sidama land, the Sidama mothers and daughters made the nation proud by setting an excellent example on what does women in Sidama society mean. Historically, the Sidama women had their own political establishment known as ‘Yakkissa’ where they come together and defend their rights from male domination. Even though the Sidama nation is known to be Patriarchal, the roles of women in Sidama society command prominent positions including in economic and social. In particular, if the husband of given woman abuses his wife, the abused woman takes her case to the leaders of their association. The leaders of Yakkissa calls for all neighbourhood women to gather- like they have done today and go to the house of the abused women during unexpected time of the day when husband is at home. They suddenly capture the husband by surrounding the house from all doors by blocking his way out of the house. The captured husband receives unpalatable lessons and reality for his socially unacceptable action to his wife. He receives the lesson the hardest way which I fear not to say here what does this involves. However, the husband never abuses his wife any longer and the other men learn from this punishment thus resort to a dialogue, discussion, negotiations and reciprocal respect and care in their married life afterwards. This has been practised by the Sidama society (women) since time immemorial whilst Europe and America were inhumanely treating their women with infamous chastity belts.
Additionally, the Sidama women also play crucial role in politics whilst advising their husbands usually in community leadership positions in addition to becoming the pillar of the society in bringing up new generation. The Sidama nation believes that women are the basis of life in sustaining humanity on planet hence they must be always respected and listened to. The Sidama women therefore are venerated by the traditional Sidama for a number of reasons. Today’s successful demonstration is therefore, the reminder of the Sidama men and wider men of Ethiopia, the Women are powerful and capable of transforming the world and asserting their rights if they come together.
Gaado Furra has started at Sidama’s late freedom fighter, kalaa Wodamanuel Dubale square and their majestic march continued through to the city to finally reach to the Meskel square where the Sidama’s reformists including SNNPRS’s president honourable kalaa Million Matiwos, Sidama zone president honourable kalaa Qarree Cawwicha, mayor of Hawassa city, honourable kalaa Sukare Shunde and the Sidama’s renowned activist honourable babba Birinesh A. Nagesso and promising young female activist Danisita Assafa who read the resolution of the Gaado Furra, took their turns at the podium.
The indicated Sidama politicians and human rights defenders unanimously declared that, the Sidama nation must earn its region sooner than later and no one will stop the Sidama from asserting its rights. The Sidama prominent politician who has earned respect with his consistent action, steadfastness and indefatigable determination in standing his ground whilst openly defending the national interest of the Sidama; the regional president kalaa Million Matiwos (whose father has been executed whilst defending the rights of the Sidama during the barbaric Derg’s regime over 31 years ago) in his persuasive, brief and informative speech whilst addressing Gaado Furra participants at the Meskel square this morning has noted as follows:
‘’ከዚህ በኋላ ክልል ስጠን[አድርገን] ብለን የምንለምነውም ሆነ የምንጠብቀው አካል የለም። From now onward, there is no one from whom we expect our regional rights as a free gift. እኛው እራሳችን ህገ መንግስቱን ተንተርሰን በቅርቡ ህልማችንን እውን እናደርጋለን። Based on a constitutionally guaranteed privileges, it is us who make this dream a reality. ክልል የሚሰጥ መንግስት ባለመኖሩ ክልል እንዳንሆንም የሚያደርገን ሀይል አይኖርም። There won’t be any government that gives or denies the Sidama nation of its rights to a regional self-rule; it is us who must take it. ዋናው ነገር የኛ አንድነትና ውስጣዊ ጥንካሬ ብቻ ነው፡፡ The key issue must be our strength, unity and steadfastness. የኛ ጥያቄ የለውጡ ጸር ሳይሆን የለውጡ አካል ነው፡፡ Our quest for a regional self-rule is enduring thus is a part of reform- not the other way around. ለዋጡን ባንፈልግ ለለውጡ ባልታገልን ነበር። If we didn’t support the reform, we wouldn’t have been part of it and didn’t pay the necessary sacrifices for its success” ክቡር ፕረዝደንት ሚልዮን ማትዮስ በዛሬው ሰልፍ ላይ በመገኘት ከተናገሩት የተቀነጨበ’’ an excerpt of honourable president kalaa Million Matiwos’s today’s remark at the Gaado Furra. All 5 speakers shared the same conviction and determination.
Kudos to our mothers and sisters; prod daughters of queen (Moottiite) Furra!! Proud of you for your heroic action as your venerated Queen Furra has decisively done during those old days of our noble ancient history.
Finally, we cautiously trust that the Ethiopian government now comes to its logical and reasonable sense to urgently address the constitutional demand of the peaceful Sidama nation without further delay to avoid any unforeseeable eventualities doing so may cause.
April 09, 2019