(Muktar Mohamed Abdi)
This article briefly addresses the agendas, methodologies and upliftment specific to the Constitution of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia and how it significantly differs from the previous tyrannical constitutions of Ethiopia’s Monarchies and Derg Regime.
Ethiopia, for many years, was lead by men who were oppressive and suppressive toward the great many ethnic groups, populace and people of the country. But, today, the ethnic groups and/or diverse communities of Ethiopia are living in a time where their rights, cultures, religions, languages, personality or choices, etc. are respected and celebrated. As many of you are aware, Ethiopia is famous and is one of the few countries – not in only Africa but the world – to never have been colonized.
The success of defeating monarchy (eg. Haile Selassie) and cruel military rule (Derg) did not come easy for the people and revolutionaries of Ethiopia. So, now, with all the mobilization and efforts that went into recovering from oppression and becoming a fast-growing federalism/democratic nation, Ethiopia has a few small groups that are attempting to risk the country’s equality, freedom and development, to take back the communities of Ethiopia to earlier repressive times.
During monarch times, governance systems and decisions making were on the basis of one religion, one family and such. The methods of governance used during monarchs like Haile Selassie did not translate, incorporate or understand human rights, diversity, social affairs or issues, economic development and the notion of equity/equality for all Ethiopian citizens. As well, the constitution of all Ethiopian Monarchs clearly stated and acted out that the people, land and resources of Ethiopia all belonged to the kingdom and that the leaders were direct representatives of God. The monarch constitution or legislations were not legitimate laws that protected or empowered all Ethiopian but rather protected and served the interests of Ethiopian Monarchs.
Furthermore, the oppressive and blood-spilling Derg Regime is also well-known for single-rule and the non-representation of the rights, cultures, wellbeing of Ethiopians. The Derg Regime’s controlled almost every aspect of the Ethiopian family or individual. Legislations and laws during Derg Regime limited families and individuals to small [living] spaces (eg. one room), allowing Derg Regime members to take over and forcefully manage the resources, land, schools, factories, cooperatives, farms or agriculture, etc. Both the Derg Regime and Ethiopian Monarchies have terribly failed to practice knowledge, equality and justice and also failed to empower the people of Ethiopia.
The diverse communities of Ethiopia struggles (losing both lives and resources) to replace the oppression of Derg Regime and Ethiopian Monarchy with the Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF), a government that represents and power-shares with all Ethiopians. The victory of removing Derg Regime and Ethiopian Monarch-hopefuls came on the 20th of Ginbot, 1983 EC. It was clear the people of Ethiopia have been yearning for a system that represented the needs.
It was clear the people of Ethiopia have been yearning for a system that represented the needs, social mobility strategies, economic development, political stability – all founded on the notion of equality, equity, sustainability, freedom, and the general wellbeing of all Ethiopia. The new governance, soon after replacing the cruel Derg Regime, began mobilize and create efficient and inclusive security, economic development and a national movement to uplift Ethiopians from poverty and ignorance. As well, the people of Ethiopia quickly utilized their new rights and partook in establishing and electing representatives and macro/micro-level systems that firm unified federalism and socio-economic empowerment.
The diverse groups of Ethiopia also unified to create Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia Constitution, clearly stating basic and intricate human rights, freedom, equality, freedom of religion and culture, justice and that the development (throughout all sectors) must be distributed and experienced evenly.
It is certain – Ethiopians are benefiting from economic, political and social integration and this came as a result of unison public, private and governmental sectors assembling towards democratic federalism, socio-economic development and environmental justice; Whilst, at the same time, eradicating self-serving motives, inequality, oppression and always requiring leaders and civil servants to be development and unity oriented.
With all the strides and measures made toward empowering Ethiopians and bettering Ethiopia, it is surprising and unfortunate that some blood and power-hungry individuals want to manipulate communities and return tyrannical rule. Evaluate the achievements and efforts of Ethiopia in the past twenty five years (the level of efficient economic changes, development, security, equality) and be mindful of the following: upward and betterment is the only direction of this country. Overall, the old poverty-stricken and oppressive Ethiopia has passed and the new Ethiopia will continue to move forward and transform.
* The author, Muktar Mohamed Abdi, can be reached at Kaahin54@gmail.com