Date: Friday, 03 November 2017
By: Berhane Woldu
Empire building in Ethiopia started with Emperor Tewodros of Gonder who ended the Ages of princes and ruled from 1855 to 1868 succeeded by Emperor Yohannes IV of Tigraye; followed by Menelik of Shoa who started the invasion to the south specifically the Oromo. King of Shoa Menelik in 1886 conquered the western section from Blue Nile River to Illubabor crossed over the Awash River and invaded the southern plateau of Arsi Oromo and the city of Harar. Ethiopian Empire was created. In 1943 Emperor Haile Selassie centralizing his power formed Councils of Ministers who were people from Shoa as advisors to the Throne. According to Bahru Zewde Economic origins of the state of Ethiopia;
His Majesty instituting Abyssinians supremacy ruled the Empire until 1974; toppled by the Marxist regime of Co/Mengestu. In 1991 led by the Tigray Peoples Liberation Front (TPLF) Ethiopian Peoples Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) took power to create a nation-state. Woyane through its divisive governance is faring no better than their predecessor is presently endangering the Ethiopian Empire into Fragmentation.
Tigray’s self-consciousness and historical grievance against Showa’s rule, neglect and poverty were cause enough to form a nationalist movement. Tigray Woyane believes that Tigray is an oppressed nation entitled to self-determination up to succession. In 1991 TPLF become king maker and liberator of Tigraye; rule of Ethiopian Empire preserving the old system of Supremacy; imitating Emperor Hail Selassie and Derge. EPRDF’s governance has preserved the supremacy of the “Center” with the same arrangement “corps of center and peripheral elite” (John Markakis). The EPRDF’s policy of land confiscation of “Highland and lowland periphery” awarding it to the land starved Abyssinian is the major cause of the present upheavals. EPRDF’s rule of “corps of center and peripheral elite” continuing domination in the face of unrelenting revolutionary opposition had lead to many political burst.
EPRDF in 1989 at its first congress falsely promised that “the right of Nations and Nationalities to self-determination up to secession”. Betraying its own promise TPLF systematically alienated every legal opposition that was a threat to its political dominance, left with no choice Nationalist movements mushroomed. ALF, OLF, ONLF are Nationalist movement that are waging war to bring about liberation to their oppressed people. Looking back at the becoming of TPLF on can conclude that the TPLF never had intention of an all inclusive democratic political system for Ethiopia. Denial of political integration and economic exploitation has become the cause of strong opposition movements that have raised arms against Woyane. Geinbot Sebate (7) Demihit, Ogaden, Oromo are some with an army wing. Oromo Peoples Democratic Organization (OPDO) which was part of EPRDF has presently become one of the main opposition inside Ethiopia to Woyane’s domination. The Oromo, Afar, Southern People, Somali, Gambella, Sidama, Beni Shangul, Gomuz and Borona & Guji who are politically deprived, socially lag behind and deprived of wealth sharing under the Federal system have waged war on Woyane to ascertain their right.
The Civil disobedience of 2016 and the present upheavals in the peripheries and Amhara region are a direct result of the misguided oppressive governance of the Woyane minority regime. The Minority regime TPLF unwilling to renounce supremacy and accept equitable power sharing, genuine multi-national and decentralized state has endangered the existence of the Ethiopian Empire bringing the nation to the brink of its downfall. “Waged against determined opposition, it has incited endless conflict staining the country’s history with the blood of generations. Today the struggle continues, and so does the bloodshed and the misery it brings.” J. Markakis Ethiopia The Last Two Frontiers
Ethiopian Minority regime Wayne has monopolized the economic and politics of the Country occupied in the same battles that exhausted its predecessors. Political rift in the “legal opposition” that are inside the country foreshadows yet another crack with unforeseeable consequences. “Legal opposition” is making the same mistakes King Selassie Dergu and Weyane made. Not renouncing supremacy and accept equitable power sharing with the side-line nationalities and loss of the privilege to determine the distribution of national resources. Incoherent as the “legal” opposition may have seemed, it is clear that it is dominated by nationalist hostile to “ethnic” federalism. J. Markakis
“Woyane” in the last 26 years have used the power of money in Ethiopia’s politics to enrich the “Woyane Elite” while their subjects are living in poverty and drastic inequalities. Around 90 percent of the population suffers from numerous deprivations and more than 30 million people in the High and lowland periphery still face chronic food shortages with 5.7 million starving (FAO 2017). Woyane elite have lost legitimacy to govern are in total disarray fragmented internally. The Empire is about to burst into civil war the only out of this dilemma and danger is for the Woyane regime to respect the desire of the people and hand over power.
Woyane’s Subjugation and betrayal of the people more than ever in Ethiopia’s history has given reason for self-respecting nationality to boost their membership and amplify their activities. OLF, ONLF, ALF as well as others have the support of their Nationals it is imperative that these movements play a crucial role in Ethiopia’s future. Ethiopian opposition parties need to understand a genuine multinationals, multi-cultural, decentralized state comes with renouncing the will to dominate. Acknowledging the past errors; relinquishing power to the Majority building a system of government on legitimacy and political integration is the only way going forward and to save the Ethiopian Empire.