The Damage Being Done Against Oromo Humanity and Property by the TPLF/EPRDF Regime is Difficult to Estimate!
By Getinet Dinkayehu | September 20, 2013
The Ethiopian Empire is generally the land of slavery for Oromo nation. Ever since Oromo were colonized by Abyssinian rulers in the last decades of the 19th century, the Oromo people have been under repression of successive Abyssinian-Ethiopian regimes and now by the TPLF colonial-Apartheid regime. The ongoing harassment of Oromo nationalists is part of the general policy of the Abyssinian-Ethiopian empire-state to politically, culturally and economically subjugate the Oromo people, who are currently struggling for the right to self-rule to break free from the colonial burden of the Abyssinian-Ethiopian empire-state. Nowdays, the scale of oppression against the Oromo people by the incumbent Wayane regime has no comparable. This government actively involved in systematic genocide and ethnic cleansing against the Oromo people.
Since 1992, the TPLF terrorist regime has controlled the Oromo and denied the freedom of expression, association, organization, the media, and all forms of communication and information networks. This government has been focusing on brutally attacking the Oromo national movement led by the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) and on robbing the economic resources of Oromia in order to enrich the Tigrayan elites and their collaborators and to specifically develop the Tigrayan region. To achieve their political and economic objectives, the regime is mainly using its Puppet organization known as OPDO. It is clear that OPDO was a pseudo organization created and is today controlled by the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF); the OPDO is led by Tigrayan cadres, elements of Oromo speaking colonial settlers, and opportunistic Oromos who would do anything in exchange for comfortable lifestyles. It is under this pseudo organization that the Oromo nationalists are being killed, maimed, arrested, tortured, assassinated and fled the country just because of their ethnic backgrounds and their political opinions. The Standard reason given for detaining and killing the Oromo people in Ethiopia is that they are suspected of supporting the OLF. Besides robbing and siphoning all moveable properties and resources of Oromia to Tigray region, the Wayanes have burnt the natural environment of Oromia, they filled the country’s top political and economic positions with men from their own Tigaray ethnicity and they filled the countries prisons with the ethnic Oromos. The Oromo people for the last 21 years are the most evicted, the most displaced, the most repressed and the most occupied people in Ethiopia.
Woyane Torture Cell
Today, there are more than 25,000 Oromos jailed and being tortured in Ethiopian prison suspected of Oromo Liberation Front members and supporters. Prominent Oromo individuals, scholars, civil servants, businessmen/women, teachers and students, farmers are being murdered, detained, kidnapped, displaced and harassed for no crime committed. The TPLF-led regime mainly targets the Oromo people and Oromia, because of their economic resources and political resistance. Because the Oromo occupy Ethiopia’s richest areas and cover nearly half of the population of Ethiopia, they are seen as the greatest threat to the present Tigrean-led government. Subsequently, any indigenous Oromo organizations and independent Medias have been closed by the government. Despite the Oromo people make up the largest nation in the Horn of Africa, and the language, Afan Oromo, is the third largest language with most speakers in Africa, there is no a single independent Afan Oromo media outlet operating in Oromia today. In an effort to destroy all peaceful Oromo movements and institutions in Ethiopia, the TPLF regime attacked all Oromo civil society members and Medias including the famous Mecha Tulema association, the OFDM and Jimma Times and Urji newspapers. Many of Macha Tulama Association members and Oromo journalists were imprisoned, killed and forced to flee for being an independent Oromo organization and for being voices for oppressed Oromo people. We should not forget what the Mecha Tulema members and Oromo Journalists and activists have suffered the last 21 years under TPLF and we always remember their peaceful struggle for justice for the Oromo people in Ethiopia. Now the TPLF government, like the previous Ethiopian governments, has left the majority Oromo nation in Ethiopia without any form of independent organization or Medias. Only organizations and media that are owned and controlled by the Tigrayan government have continued serving to impose the Tigrayan brutal authority and all churning out their propaganda. Afan Oromo radios, such as VOA and SBO – which are broadcasting to Oromia from exile are also under constant threat of jamming by Ethiopian Brutal regime. Several of Diaspora-based Oromo news and opinion websites are being scrutinized and blocked in Oromia, and Internet surfing is highly monitored.
Currently, asking a license for an independent Oromo newspaper or media in Ethiopia is unthinkable and even can be considered as an act of terrorism due to the current repressive media laws in Ethiopia. Not only Oromo journalists are in prison or in exile, but also the mass Oromo media are under arrest in Ethiopia.
According to international conventions, genocide is the planned destruction of any economic, political or a social group. Such kind organized destruction of Oromo nationalists, Oromo Medias, journalists and the whole leaderships are characterized as genocide. Article II of the United Nations Convention defines genocide as “acts committed with intent to destroy, in whole or in part, a national, ethnical, racial or religious group”.
Very recently, there are situations that engaged in genocidal cleansing in East Hararge zone of Oromia by the armed forces of the Ethiopian regime. Forests including a UNESCO’s registered and privileged as diversity of living habitat located in Ilu Aba Bora zone of Oromia are destroyed by the TPLF’s company (EFFORT). In Central Oromia, thousands of people and their livestock died due to the industrial pollution directly released to rivers and lakes. In August 2013 TPLF/EPRDF federal police massacred at least 25 innocent Oromos including one child, wounded hundreds and arrested thousands, who were peacefully demonstrating against illegal detention of their mosque leaders without arrest warrant.
Ethiopian prisons are crying in Oromo language, millions of acres of Ormia’s most fertile lands are being offered to foreign investors, often in long-term leases and at cheapest prices and several thousands of Oromo farmers are forcibly displaced from their land and making their home on the street, the Oromo people can’t live in their own country and on their own land ; they are unable to cultivate, trade, produce and study in peace and freedom, the natural resources of the Oromo people and its land and minerals are on sale to foreign investors, and leaving all Oromos and our country Oromia in poverty. Productive Oromo youngsters and innovative minds are being dragged to prisons and several thousands are forced to exiles in fear of persecution, speaking for justice as an Oromo is entirely seen as an act of terrorism in today’s Ethiopia.
Ethiopia for the last two decades is being ruled by heartless dictators who continuously deceiving the international community, the U.S. and Europe by saying that they are trying to democratize the country, but they are not trying to democratize at all. They are suppressing the nation brutally, and they are suppressing and killing difference of opinions. If you need to say something against the dictators in Ethiopia, you will be silenced or killed. Any advocacy of Oromo rights to self-determination was labeled as “terrorism” In Ethiopia. The regime that announces, in its constitution, that democracy and human rights are “unbreakable” and “inalienable” in Ethiopia has engaged in terrorist activities mainly targeting the Oromo people. Despite all these anti-democratic and anti-humanitarian way of its political development, the TPLF government continues enjoying a huge financial and economic funding from the United States and the European governments. This shows that the US and European countries are indeed financing war and state terrorism against people.
Oromo refugees and asylum seekers who escaped such gross human rights violations and dispersed to neighboring countries like Kenya, Somaliland and Djibouti are being abducted and forcefully sent back to Ethiopia by the request of TPLF security agents who are working crossing the border in Kenya, Somaliland and Djibouti. The TPLF security forces hunting down prominent Oromos by crossing the international borders to take them back to Ethiopia and locking them in prison for the rest of their lives- or killing them. As a number of international Human right organizations repeatedly witnessed in their recent reports, those who sent back to Ethiopia were being tortured, sentenced and murdered in Ethiopian prison. The recent example is Tesfahun Chemeda, who was an exemplary activist in the Oromo student movement while he was studying in Finfinne/Addis Ababa University and graduating in Civil Engineering. Because he was a daring activist of freedom for the Oromo people, he became one of the targets of persecution by the Woyane authorities and forced to flee to Kenya to escape the imminent danger from the TPLF agents. Despite his refugee status in Kenya granted by the UNHCR, with unknown reason he and his friend Mesfin Abebe was arrested by Kenyan security agents and handed over to their torturers in Ethiopia. Tesfahun Chemeda detained in the Kalliti prison center, held in solitary confinement, with no access to medical treatment and severe beatings for nearly two years, which resulted in his death on 24 August 2013 and his friend in refugee Mesfin Abebe was sentenced to death penalty. The murdering of Tesfahun Chemeda in such inhuman way is witnessing the continuity of TPLF government targeting and hunting down of highly qualified Oromo elites and nationalists.
The death of students Gaddisa Hirphasaa, Alemayehu Garba, several Oromo nationalists and now Tesfahun Chemeda while serving harsh prison terms will be remembered by the Oromo people with great pain. But for how long we Oromos live under such repressive and terrorist TPLF Regime? I will leave the answer to the readers.
As one Oromo nationalist, I am very disturbed and angered on the boundless and indescribable atrocities being committed by the TPLF/EPRDF against the Oromo people and I am here passing my message to all Oromo nationalists and activists at this critical time, to urgently call up on all Oromo people both in Ethiopian and the Diaspora to be united as oneness under our true organization Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) and fight this ruthless TPLF regime. This is the time for all freedom thirsty Oromo people in every corners to put aside the slight differences and stand together in unity and say enough is enough to the current cold-blooded rule in Oromia.
We are now on the time when the atrocities on the Oromo people have reached to intolerable stage, when Oromo elites and activists are hunted down like wild animals in their own country, when the Woyane regime is extensively plundering the Oromo resources, selling Oromo land and wealth to foreign investors, and leaving all Oromos and our country Oromia in poverty, we have been cornered, humiliated, persecuted, harassed, assaulted, exiled, locked-in jail, tortured, expelled, impoverished, confiscated and killed. Now we must have no tolerance for this brutal TPLF regime anymore.
Therefore, this all systematic genocidal war waged on the people needs an urgent solution and needs an urgent intervention from all sectors of the Oromo society , Oromo political organizations, Oromo nationalists and Oromo activists to stand up together and fire up the struggle to bring an end to this era of darkness and genocidal in Oromia. Now our only solution, as Oromo, is to get organized and struggle desperately until we get our freedom.
All Oromo people in Diaspora have also the responsibility of making adequate financial, intellectual and other contributions to support the struggle being paid by our own people in our homeland and to raise your voice to foreign governments to stop financing TPLF. We have to show international community that financing TPLF really means financing war and state terrorism against the people and thereby prolonging the suffering of the people under these dictators.
Overall, Oromo nationalists, activists, intellectuals and all Oromo political organizations must start to openly discuss the tactics and strategies of the national struggle both in Oromia and the Diaspora to engage in practical organizational, ideological, and diplomatic actions. United as one under Oromo Liberation struggle, we can make a difference in a very short period of time.
Victory for Oromo people! Injifannon Ummata Oromoof!