On bringing the crisis in Oromia to an end.
By Dr Bedassa Tadesse, January 18, 2019 – Via Dhaabasaa Gamalaal
We must admit that the primary reason for the current crisis in Oromia is the fact that the OPDO is staffed with drained and demoralized heads (people) riddled with distrust and doubt about their future.
Even if members of the WBO lay down not only their arms, but also their belts (as Jawar Mohamed likes to say), the crisis would not end. The mere presence of the OLF presents an existential threat to the future of the OPDO, especially its top leaders.
Members of the OPDO do know the aspirations of Oromo, and of course, that of the OLF with a perfect clarity. For them, the OLF means the end of everything they dreamed for. It means defeat at the polling booth! A recent report from the EU security analysis puts the chance of the EPRDF to lose in the upcoming election and transition into a new government at a very low rate of 2%. Remember, EPRDF is not OPDO. The same study estimates the chance for the OPDO to lose power in Oromia at a much higher likelihood of 90%.
Now think of what defeat at the polling booth for OPDO amounts to (would mean): Facing justice for the crimes they helped commit over the last 27 years; humiliation in the face of the people they terrorized; demolition of the scheme they have been dreaming of creating to milk financial gains for a long time to come ( lessons from the TPLF); the collapse of the future of children they raised with the false promise of getting them them education and employment in foreign lands; homelessness for disgruntled former members of the OLF who just returned home and joined the ODP with the hope of retiring on the backs of their people.
As long as these frightening nightmares are staring at them, Colonel Abiy, Obbo Lamma, and their crew (whether old or young), would be forced to find ways to sustain havoc among the Oromo people. It pushes them to rely on the advice given by left overs from the Derg system ( such as Dawit Wolde Giorgis, Kassa Kebede), and of course, those who day dream the “One language and one culture Ethiopia” of Haile Seallassie. It makes them subscribe to the sinister schemes of the likes of Berhanu Nega and Andargachew Tsige, who present themselves as saviors of Ethiopia.
It is my educated guess that if we are to stop the crisis in Oromia, the answer is not on blaming the Oromo Liberation Army (WBO) or the suggestion that they disarm. Knowing this truth, I propose that we, the Oromo push the OLF and its leadership embark adopt a new approach: offering meaningful alternatives for leaders of the OPDO, their families, and the Diaspora Oromo crew who just returned to Oromia with empty suitcases. Why?
I do know that people respond to incentives. For incentives to work, the benefit of making the OPDO give up their schemes must be greater than the costs they face shall they choose to abandon the current crisis. It may be as simple as providing them a settled future as when demobilizing the military. Although it looks daunting (a shock to some of you), I think such alternatives should include absolving them of certain crimes (in the form of forgiveness), guaranteed incomes, a luxury house, a plot of land, etc. Other arrangements such as enabling their affiliates with professional background to keep certain positions in the government bureaucracy might also help. I do not know who would be able to make such arrangements, but I think the council of leaders from Abba Gada may help.