የኦሮሚያ ክልል በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ላይ ያለውን ሕገ-መንግስታዊ ልዩ ጥቅም ለመወሰን የወጣ አዋጅ

በኢትዮጵያ ፌዴራላዊ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብሊክ ሕገ-መንግስት መግቢያ ላይ የኢትዮጵያ ብሔር፣ ብሔረሰቦችና ሕዝቦች መጪው የጋራ እድላችን መመስረት ያለበት ከታሪካችን የወረስነውን የተዛባ ግንኙነት በማረምና የጋራ ጥቅማችንን በማሳደግ ላይ መሆኑን በመቀበላቸው፣

ሕገ-መንግስቱ ለብሔር፣ ብሔረሰቦችና ሕዝቦች ፖለቲካዊ፣ ኢኮኖሚያዊ፣ ማህበራዊና ባህላዊ መብቶች እውቅና የሰጠ፣ አንድ የፖለቲካና ኢኮኖሚ ማህበረሰብ ለመፍጠር የህዝቦች ተጠቃሚነት ከተረጋገጠላቸው ብሔሮች መካከል አንዱ የኦሮሞ ህዝብ በመሆኑ፣

የኢትዮጵያ ፌዴራላዊ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብሊክ ሕገ-መንግስት በአንቀፅ 49 ንዑስ አንቀፅ (5) የኦሮሚያ ክልል የአገልግሎት አቅርቦት ወይም የተፈጥሮ ሐብት አጠቃቀምንና የመሳሰሉትን ጉዳዮች በተመለከተ፣ እንዲሁም አዲስ አበባ በኦሮሚያ ክልል አካል በመሆኑ የሚነሱ ሁለቱን የሚያስተሳስሩ አስተዳደራዊ ጉዳዮችን በተመለከተ ያለውን ልዩ ጥቅም እንደሚጠበቅለት በመደንገጉ፣

የኦሮሚያ ክልል በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ላይ ያለውን ልዩ ጥቅም ዝርዝር በሕግ እንደሚወሰን በሕገ-መንግስቱ አንቀፅ 49 ንዑስ አንቀፅ (5) ስለሚደነግግና ይህንን ሕግ ማውጣት አስፈላጊ ሆኖ በመገኘቱ፣

በኢትዮጵያ ፌዴራላዊ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብሊክ ሕገ-መንግስት አንቀፅ 55 ንዑስ አንቀፅ (1) መሠረት የሚከተለው ታውጇል፣

ክፍል አንድ:- ጠቅላላ ድንጋጌ

1/ አጭር ርዕስ

ይህ አዋጅ “የኦሮሚያ ክልል በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ላይ ያለውን ህገ-መንግሥታዊ ልዩ ጥቅም ለመወሰን የወጣ አዋጅ ቁጥር ____/2009” ተብሎ ሊጠቀስ ይችላል፡፡

2/ ትርጓሜ

በዚህ አዋጅ ውስጥ የቃሉ አግባብ ሌላ ትርጉም የሚሰጠው ካልሆነ በስተቀር ፡-

1) “ሕገ-መንግስት” ማለት የኢትዮጵያ ፌዴራላዊ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብሊክ ሕገ- መንግስት አዋጅ ቁጥር 1/1987 ማለት ነው፡፡

2) “ክልል” ማለት የኦሮሚያ ክልል ማለት ነው፡፡

3) “መንግስት” ማለት የኦሮሚያ ክልላዊ መንግስት ነው፡፡

4) “ጨፌ ኦሮሚያ” ማለት የኦሮሚያ ክልል የህግ አውጭ አካል ማለት ነው፡፡

5) “ልዩ ጥቅም” ማለት በሕገ መንግስቱ ውስጥ እውቅና ያገኙ የኢኮኖሚ፣ ማህበራዊ ፣ የባህል፣ የቋንቋ፣ አስተዳደራዊ፣ የልማት፣ የፖለቲካ፣ የአካባቢ ደህንነት፣ የንብረት መብቶች የመሳሰሉትን በልዩ ሁኔታ የኦሮሚያ ክልላዊ መንግስት በአዲስ አበባ ላይ የሚያገኘዉ ጥቅም ማለት ነው፡፡

6) “አስተዳደር” ማለት የአዲስ አበባ ከተማ አስተዳደር ማለት ነው ፡፡

7) “የኦሮሞ ብሔር ተወላጆች” ማለት የአዲስ አበባ ከተማ ከመመስረቱ በፊት ጀምሮ ነባር ነዋሪ የነበሩ ወይም አሁንም በከተማው ነዋሪ የሆኑ ኦሮሞዎች ማለት ነው፡፡

8) “ሰው” ማለት ማንኛውም የተፈጥሮ ሰው ወይም ሕጋዊ የሰውነት መብት ያለው አካል ነው፡፡

3/ የተፈጻሚነት ወሰን

ይህ አዋጅ በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ከተማ አስተዳደር ዉስጥ ተፈጻሚነት ይኖረዋል፡፡

4/ የፆታ አገላለጽ

በዚህ አዋጅ በወንድ ፆታ የተገለፀው የሴት ፆታንም ይጨምራል፡፡

5/ ስያሜ

1) የከተማው ስም ፊንፊኔ ከአዲስ አበባ ጋር እኩል መጠሪያ ይሆናል፡፡

2) የከተማው ሕጋዊ ስም በፅሁፍ ፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ተብሎ ጥቅም ላይ መዋል ይኖርበታል፡፡

6/ ወሰን

1) የከተማው ወሰን የከተማው አስተዳደርና የክልሉ መንግስት በሚያደርጉት የጋራ ስምምነት ይወሰናል፡፡ የወሰን ምልክትም ይደረግበታል፡፡

2) በዚህ አንቀፅ ንዑስ አንቀፅ (1) በተደነገገው መሰረት የተቀመጠውን የወሰን ምልክት ከተደረገበት በኋላ በማናቸውም ምክንያት መስፋት የማይቻል ሲሆን ወሰኑንም ክልሉ እና አስተዳደሩ የማክበር ግዴታ አለባቸው፡፡

3) ይህ አዋጅ ተግባራዊ መሆን ከጀመረበት ጊዜ ጀምሮ በ6 ወራት ጊዜ ውስጥ ወሰን ተከልሎ ምልክት መደረግ ይኖርበታል፡፡

7/ የስራ ቋንቋ

የከተማው አስተዳደር የስራና ኦፊሴላዊ ቋንቋ አማርኛ እና አፋን ኦሮሞ ነው፡፡

8/ የኦሮሞ ብሔር ተወላጆች መብት

1) በከተማው አስተዳደር ነዋሪ የሆኑ የኦሮሞ ብሔር ተወላጆች በኢትዮጵያ ፌዴራላዊ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብሊክ ሕገ-መንግስት እና በሌሎች የሀገሪቱ ሕጎች የተከበሩ መብቶች በከተማው ውስጥ የመጠቀም ሙሉ መብት አላቸው፡፡

2) የከተማ አስተዳደሩም ይህንን መብት የማክበር ግዴታ ይኖርበታል፡፡

ክፍል ሁለት:- የኦሮሚያ ክልል በከተማው አስተዳደሩ ላይ የሚኖረው ልዩ ጥቅሞች

9/ ጠቅላላ

በዚህ አዋጅ ውስጥ የተጠቀሱት ዝርዝር የክልሉ መብቶችና ልዩ ጥቅሞች በህገ- መንግሥቱ አንቀፅ 49 ንዑስ አንቀፅ (5) ላይ የተገለፀውን አጠቃላይ አነጋገር የሚገድበው አይሆንም፡፡

10/ የልዩ ጥቅሙ መርሆዎች

1) የከተማ አስተዳደሩ የሚያወጣቸው ፖሊሲዎች፣ ስትራቴጂዎች፣ ሕጎችና ዕቅዶች የከተማው ነዋሪ የኦሮሞ ብሔር ተወላጆች ፖለቲካዊ፣ ኢኮኖሚያዊ፣ ማህበራዊና ባህላዊ ሕገ መንግስታዊ መብቶች የሚያስከብር መሆናቸውን ማረጋገጥ ይገባል፡፡

2) የከተማ አስተዳደሩ የሚያወጣቸው ፖሊሲዎች፣ ስትራቴጂዎች፣ ሕጎችና ዕቅዶች የነዋሪ የኦሮሞ ተወላጆችን ጥቅሞችና ፍላጎቶች ግምት ውስጥ ያስገባና መብቶቻቸውን የሚያስከብር መሆኑን ማረጋገጥ ይኖርበታል፡፡

3) የመስተዳድሩ ምክር ቤት ከክልሉ መብቶችና ጥቅሞች ጋር በሚያያዙ ጉዳዮች ላይ በሚሰጠው ውሣኔ የክልሉን ጥቅሞች ከግምት ውስጥ በማስገባት ይወስናል፡፡

11/ ስለ አስተዳደራዊ ጥቅሞች

1) በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ውስጥ ነዋሪ የሆነው የኦሮሞ ተወላጆች የራሳቸውን እድል በራሳቸው የመወሰን መብት ይኖራቸዋል፡፡

2) በከተማው መስተዳደር ም/ቤት ውስጥ የኦሮሞ ብሄር ተወላጆች እንደ ከተማው ነዋሪ ያላቸው ውክልና እንደተጠበቀ ሆኖ፣ ከምክር ቤት ወንበር 25% የማያንስ የኦሮሞ ብሄር ተወላጆች ብቻ የሚወከሉበት መቀመጫ ይኖራቸዋል፡፡

3) በዚህ አንቀፅ ንዑስ አንቀፅ (2) ላይ የተደነገገው እንደተጠበቀ ሆኖ፣ የኦሮሞ ብሄር ተወላጆች ውክልና በየደረጃው ባሉ ምክር ቤቶች፣ የሥራ አስፈፃሚውና የዳኝነት አካል ውስጥ ተፈፃሚነት ይኖረዋል፡፡

4) በኦሮሚያ የመንግስታዊና ህዝባዊ ድርጅቶች መስሪያ ቤቶች ውስጥ ወይም ጉዳዮች ላይ የሚፈፀሙ ወንጀሎች እንዲሁም በኦሮሚያ ክልል ውስጥ ወንጀል ሰርተው ወደ 4 ፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ በመምጣት የሚደበቁትን ተጠሪጣሪ ወንጀለኞች የክልሉ ፖሊስ፣ አቃቤ ህግና ፍርድ ቤቶች የመመርመር፣ የመያዝና የመቅጣት ሙሉ መብት ይኖራቸዋል፡፡

5) በዚህ አንቀፅ ንኡስ አንቀፅ (4) የተደነገገ ቢኖርም፣ በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ የተፈፀሙ ከክልሉ ጋር የተያያዙ ወንጀሎች ከፌዴራልና ከከተማ አስተዳደሩ የፍትህና የፀጥታ አካሎች ጋር በትብብር መስረት ይኖርባቸዋል፡፡

6) ፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ የኦሮሚያ ክልላዊ መንግስት ዋና ከተማ ሆና ታገለግላለች፡፡

ስለ ማህበራዊ የአገልግሎት ጥቅሞች
1) የኦሮሚያ ክልላዊ መንግሥት ለተለያዩ መንግሥታዊ፣ ሕዝባዊና የልማት ማህበሮች ቢሮዎች፣ ክልሉ ታሪካዊ፣ ባህላዊ፣ ማህበራዊና ኢኮኖሚያዊ እሴቶቹን ለስብሰባ አደራሾች፣ የኮሚኒቲ ማዕከላትና ለሌሎች ሕዝባዊ አገልግሎቶች የሚውሉ ህንፃዎችና ፋሲሊቲዎች የሚገነባበት በቂ መሬት ክልለሉ ከሚፈለገው አከባቢ ከከተማ አስተዳደሩ ከሊዝ ነፃ የማግኘት ጥቅሙ ይጠበቅለታል፡፡

2) ለኦሮሚያ ክልላዊ መንግሥት ኃላፊዎችና ሠራተኞች እንዲሁም የኦሮሞ ተወላጆች የመኖሪያ ቤት በከተማ አስተዳደሩ ከሚገነቡ የጋራ መኖሪያ ቤቶች በ15% ቅድሚያ የማግኘት ወይም የመከራየት መብት ይኖራቸዋል፡፡

3) የኦሮሚያ ክልላዊ መንግስትና የከተማው ነዋሪ የኦሮሞ ተወላጆች አደባባዮች፣ ማዕከላት፣ አዳራሾች፣ ስታዲየሞች፣ ሜዳዎች…ወዘተ አገልግሎት ማግኘት ሲፈልጉ ቅድሚያ የመጠቀም ሙሉ መብት ይኖራቸዋል፡፡

4) በከተማው አስተዳደር ውስጥ ነዋሪ ለሆኑ የኦሮሞ ተወላጆች ልጆቻቸውን በአፍ መፍቻ ቋንቋቸው በአፋን ኦሮሞ የሚያስተምሩ ት/ቤቶች በመስተዳድሩ ወጪ ተሰርተው ትምህርት እንዲሰጥ ያደርጋል፡፡

5) የከተማ አስተዳደሩ ከከተማው ዳሪ ላይ ለሚገኙ አርሶ አደሮች የጤና አገልግሎት በቅርብ እንዲያገኙ የጤና ተቋማትን እንዲያስፋፋ ይደረጋል፡፡

6) የክልሉ ቢሮዎችና ሠራተኞች የሚጠቀሙባቸው የመኖሪያ ቤቶች የሚሆን የመብራት፣ ውኃ፣ መንገድ፣ ስልክና ወዘተ የመሰረተ ልማቶች አገልግሎቶች እንዲያገኙ ይደረጋል፡፡

7) በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ዙሪያ ለሚኖረው ሕብረተሰብ ልዩ ልዩ የማህበራዊ አገልግሎቶች እንደ መንገድ፣ ትራንስፖርት፣ መብራት፣ ውኃ፣ ስልክና የመሳሰሉትን በማቅረብ የፊንፊኔ 5 ዙሪያ ኦሮሚያ ዞን ከተሞችና የገጠር ቀበሌዎች ነዋሪዎች ተጠቃሚ እንዲሆኑ ይደረጋል፡፡

8) ለከተማው መስተዳድር የመጠጥ ውሃ አገልግሎት በክልሉ ከሚገኙ የከርሰ ምድርና ገፀ ምድር ውሃ የሚገኝ በመሆኑ የመጠጥ ውሃ አገልግሎቱ የሚገኝበትና የአገልግሎቱ መስመር የሚያልፍባቸው የክልሉ ከተሞች እና ቀበሌዎች የውሃ አቅርቦት ዝርጋት በመስተዳድሩ ወጭ የመጠጥ ውሃ ተጠቃሚ የመሆን መብት አላቸው፡፡

9) የከተማ መስተዳድር ለከተማው ህዝብ የሚያቀርባቸው አገልግሎቶች በመስተዳድሩ አዋሳኝ ለሚኖረው የኦሮሚያ ክልል ሕዝብ ሊዳረሱ የሚችሉ ሲሆን ነዋሪዎቹ በተመሳሳይ ሁኔታ የአገልግሎቶቹ ተጠቃሚ የመሆን መብት ይኖራቸዋል፡፡

10)ከተማ አስተዳደሩ የከተማ አዋሳኝ የሆኑ የክልሉ ከተሞችና የገጠር ቀበሌዎች ላይ የሰው ሰራሽና የተፈጥሮ አደጋዎች እንዳይከሰቱ የመጠበቅና የመከላከል፤ ተከስተው ከተገኙም ጉዳቱን የመቀነስ ሃላፊነት አለበት፡፡

11)የከተማው አስተዳድር ለከተማው ህዝብ ከሚያቀርባቸው አገልግሎቶች ጋር በተያያዙ የልማት ሥራዎችን በክልሉ መንግስት ጋር በመመካከርና በመስማማት ሊፈፅም ይችላል፡፡

13/ ስለ ባህላዊና ታሪካዊ ጥቅሞች

1) በከተማ አስተዳደር ውስጥ የሚገኙ የተለያዩ ቦታዎች መጠሪያ ወይም ስያሜዎች በጥንት ስሞቻቸው እንዲጠሩና ተዛብተው እየተጠሩ ያሉት ስሞች እንዲስተካከሉ ይደረጋል፡፡

2) የከተማ አስተዳደሩ የኦሮሞ ሕዝብ ብሔራዊ ማንነት የሚያንፀባርቅ አሻራ በከተማው ውስጥ በቋሚነት እንዲኖር ከኦሮሞ ሕዝብ ጋር የተያያዙ ታሪካዊ ክስተቶች ወይም በኦሮሞ ብሄራዊ ጀግኖች ስም መታሰቢያዎች እንዲኖሩ የመንግስት ተቋማት ህንፃዎች፣ አደባባዮች፣ ጎዳናዎች፣ አይሮፕላን ማረፊያ፣ ሠፈሮች እና የመሳሰሉት በስማቸው የመሰየም ሃላፊነት አለበት፡፡

3) በከተማ አስተዳሩ ወጪ በተቋቋሙ የሬድዮና የቴሌቪዥን ማሰራጫ ጣቢያዎች ከከተማው የሚተላለፉ ፕሮግራሞች ለአፋን ኦሮሞ የአየር ጊዜ የመመደብ ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

4) በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ የሚኖረው የዛሬውና መጪው ትውልድ የፊንፊኔን ታሪክ በተዛበ መልኩ ሳይሆን ኦሮሞዎች ይኖሩበት የነበረች ጥንታዊ መሬታቸው እንደነበረችና በኃይል ተገፍተው ወደ ዳር በመገፋታቸው ቁጥራቸው እየተመናመነ መሄዱንና ወደ አናሳነት መቀየራቸውን ህዝቡ እንዲያውቅና እውቅና እንዲሰጥ የከተማ አስተዳደሩ በትምህርት ስርዓት፣ በሚዲያ፣በህዝባዊ መድረኮችና በመሳሰሉት የመስራት ግዴታ ይኖራዋል፡፡

5) በመስተዳድሩ ውስጥ የሚገኙ ትምህርት ቤቶች የታሪክ ማስተማሪያ መፃሕፍት ውስጥ የኦሮሞ ህዝብ የፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ የጥንት ነባር ሕዝብ መሆኑን አዲሱ ትውልድ እንዲገነዘብ ይደረጋል፡፡

6) በከተማ አስተዳደሩ ውስጥ ነዋሪ የሆኑ የኦሮሞ ተወላጆች የማንነቱ ዋና መገለጫ የሆኑት ታሪኩን፣ እምነቱን፣ ቋንቋውን፣ ባህላዊ እሴቶቹን የመጠበቅ፣ የማሳደግና ስራ ላይ የማዋል መብቱን የከተማ አስተዳደሩ የማክበር ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

7) በከተማው ውስጥ የሚገኙ ሙዚያሞች፣ የባህል ማዕከላት፣ የሲኒማና ትያትር ቤቶች እና ፓርኮች የኦሮሞ ባህላዊ እሴቶች፣ ቋንቋ፣ ታሪክና ወግ ሊያንሰራሩበት የሚችሉ ስልቶችን በመቀየስ የድጋፍ እርጃዎችን የመውሰድ ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

8) በከተማው መስተዳድር ውስጥ በሚገኙ ሙዚየሞች ውስጥ የኦሮሞን ሕዝብ ታሪክ፣ ባህል፣ ወግ የሚያንፀባርቁ ቅርፆችንና መጽሐፎች እንዲሟሉና እንዲኖሩ መስተዳድሩ ከክልሉ ጋር በመመካከር የመስራት ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

14/ ስለ ኢኮኖሚያዊ ጥቅሞች

1) በከተማው የሚኖረው የኦሮሞ ተወላጅ ከመሬቱ ያለመፈናቀል ሙሉ ዋስትና አለው፡፡

2) በከተማው አስተዳደር ውስጥ በልማት ምክንያት ለሚነሱ የኦሮሞ አርሶ አደሮች በተነሱበት አከባቢ በዘላቂነት የመቋቋም መብት አላቸዉ፡፡

3) ለልማት ተነሺ መሆኑ ሲረጋገጥ በቂ ቅድመ ዝግጅት እንዲያደርጉ ማሳወቅ፣ በካሳ ግመታ ተሳታፊ እንዲሆኑ ማድረግና የወቅቱን የገበያ ዋጋ ያገናዘበ በቂ የካሳ ክፍያና ምትክ ቦታ ለተነሽው አርሶ አደርና ለቤተሰቡ በተነሱበት አከባቢ እንዲያገኙ ይደረጋል፡፡

4) በልማት ምክንያት የሚፈናቀሉ አርሶ አደሮች የተከፈላቸውን ካሳ በዘላቂነት መጠቀም እንዲችሉ ፕሮጀክቶችን በመቅረፅ ስራ ላይ እንዲውሉ ይደረጋል፡፡

5) በዚህ አንቀፅ ንዑስ አንቀፅ (2) ስራ ላይ ለማዋል እንዲቻል የከተማ አስተዳደሩ ራሱን ያቻለ ይህን ስራ የሚሰራ ተቋም በማቋቋም መደገፍና መከታተል ይኖርበታል፡፡

6) ቀደም ሲል በልማት ምክንያት ከይዞታቸው ተነስተው ለተለያዩ ማብበራዊና ኢኮኖሚያዊ ችግሮች የተጋለጡ አርሶ አደሮችና ቤተሰቦቻቸው ተገቢውን መረጃ በማሰባሰብና በማደራጀት መልሰው እንዲቋቋሙ ይደረጋል፡፡

7) ከተማ አስተደዳደሩ ለቋንቋ አገልግሎት፣ ለጋራ ምክር ቤቱ፣ ቦታን ከሊዝ ውጭ የሚሰጥ፣ የመኖሪያ ቤት ቅዲሚያ የሚሰጥ፣ የት/ቤቶች ግንባታና ማስፋፋት፣ የውሃ አቅርቦት ለአከባቢው ህዝብ በነፃ የሚሰጥ፣ ለኦሮሞ ተወላጆች ባህል፣ ታሪክ፣ ቋንቋ መስፋፋትና መንከባከብ የሚሰራ በመሆኑ ምንጫቸው ከክልሉ ሆኖ ወደ መስተዳድሩ በሚገቡ ለመኖሪያ ቤት ግንባታ፣ ለኢንዱስትርና ለፋብሪካዎች የሚውሉ ጥሬ እቃዎች፣ ለመጠጥ ውሃና ሌሎች የተፈጥሮ ሀብቶች ይጠቀማል፡፡

8) በኦሮሚያ ክልል ውስጥ የሚመረቱ የአርሶ አደር ወይም ማህበራት ምርቶች ፊንፊኔ/ አዲስ አበባ ውስጥ የገበያ ቦታ ከሊዝ ነፃ ያገኛሉ፡፡

9) የከተማ ነዋሪ የሆነው የኦሮሞ ተወላጆች በንግድና በሌሎች ኢኮኖሚያዊ ጠቀሜታ ያላቸው የስራ መስኮች ውስጥ ተሳታፊነትና ተጠቃሚነት እንዲያድግ የድጋፍ ርምጃዎችን በመውሰድ ነባሩን የኦሮሞ ህዝብ በከተማው ከሚኖረው አብዛኛው ማህበረሰብ ጋር ፍትሃዊ የሐብት ክፍፍል እንዲኖር የከተማ አስተዳደሩ ሁኔታዎችን የማመቻቸት ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

15/ ስለ አካባቢ ደህንነት ጥቅሞች

1) መስተዳድሩ ከከተማው የሚወጡትን ደርቅና ፍሳሽ ቆሻሻዎች የሚያስከትሉትን ጉዳት የአካባቢ ብክለት ቁጥጥርን አስመልክቶ በወጡ ሕጐች መሠረት የማስቀረት ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

2) ከከተማው አስተዳደር የሚወጡ ደረቅና ፍሳሽ ቆሻሻዎች ወደ ክልሉ እንዳይለቀቁ ማድረግ፣ ተለቆ ከተገኘ በሰው፣ በእንስሳትና በተፈጥሮ አከባቢ ላይ የሚደርሰውን ጉዳትና ብክለት መተበቅና መከላከል፣ መስተዳድሩ ወደ ክልሉ በተጣሉ ወይም በፈሰሱ ቆሻሻዎች ምክንያት በሰው፣ በእንስሳት፣ በመሬት፣ በአከባቢና በአየር ብክለት ላይ ለደረሰው ጉዳት በቂ ካሳ የመክፈል ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

3) መስተዳድሩ ከከተማው የሚያወጣቸው ፍሳሽና ደረቅ ቆሻሻዎችን የማከም ወይም መልሶ የመጠቀም ስልት በማቀድ መስተዳድሩ ተግባራዊ የማድረግ ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

4) በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ዙሪያ ለሚገኙት ቀበሌዎች ወንዞችና የተፈጥሮ ሀብቶች አስፈላጊውን እንክብካቤ የማድረግ ግዴታ ይኖርበታል፡፡

16/ የኦሮሚያ ክልላዊ መንግስት መብቶች

1) የክልሉ መንግስት በከተማ አስተዳደሩ በሚያወጣቸው ፖሊሲዎች፣ ስትራቴጂዎች፣ ሕጎችና ዕቅዶች የኦሮሞ ተወላጆችን ጥቅሞችና ፍላጎቶች ግምት ውስጥ ያስገባና መብቶቻቸውን የሚያስከብር መሆኑን አስተያየት እና የማሻሻያ ሐሳብ የማቅረብ መብት ይኖረዋል፡፡

2)ክልሉ ከተማውንና ክልሉን በሚያስታሳስሩ ጉዳዮች ላይ ፖሊሲዎችን፣ ስትራቴጂዎችና ዕቅዶችን በማመንጨት ለአስተዳደሩ ምክር ቤት የማቅረብ ስልጣን ይኖረዋል፡፡

3)የክልሉ መንግስት የዚህን አዋጅ ማሻሻያ ሀሳብ በማመንጨት ለኢፌዲሪ የሕዝብ ተወካዮች ምክር ቤት የማቅረብ መብት ይኖረዋል፡፡ የሕዝብ ተወካዮች ምክር ቤትም ይህን አዋጅ ለማሻሻል ሲፈልግ የክልሉ መንግስት አስተያየት መጠየቅ ይኖርበታል፡፡

4)የኢ.ፌ.ደ.ሪ. መንግሥት የሚኒስትሮች ም/ቤት ይህን አዋጅ ለማስፈጸም ደንብ ከማውጣቱ በፊት የክልሉን አስተያየት ጠይቆ በደንቡ ውስጥ አስተያየቱ እንዲያካተት ማድረግ ይኖርበታል፡፡

5)የከተማ አስተዳደሩ የነዋሪ ኦሮሞዎችንና የክልሉን መብትና ጥቅም ሊነኩ የሚችሉ ፖሊሲዎች፣ ስትራቴጂዎች፣ ሕጎችና ዕቅዶች በአስተዳደሩ ምክር ቤትና በጋራ ምክር ቤት በውይይት ከስምምነት ላይ ካልደረሰ ተፈጻሚነት አይኖራቸውም፡፡

ክፍል ሶስት:- ስለ የኦሮሞ ብሔራዊ ጉባዔ መቋቋም

17/ ስለመቋቋም

1) የኦሮሞ ብሔራዊ ጉባዔ በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ውስጥ የሚኖሩ የኦሮሞ ተወላጆች የሚወከሉበት የኦሮሞ ብሔራዊ ጉባዔ ከዚህ በኋላ “ጉባዔ“ ተብሎ የሚጠራ በዚህ አዋጅ ተቋቁሟል፡፡

2) የኦሮሞ ብሔራዊ ጉባዔ አባላት በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ውስጥ የሚኖሩ የኦሮሞ ተወላጆች ብቻ የሚሳተፉበት ምርጫ በአገሪቱ የምርጫ ሕግ መሰረት ይፈጸማል፡፡

3) ጉባዔው ቋሚ ጽ/ቤት፣ ድጋፍ ሰጪ ሠራተኞች እና ሙያተኞች ይኖሩታል፡፡

18/ የጉባዔው ሥልጣንና ተግባር

የኦሮሞ ብሔራዊ ጉባዔ ከዚህ በታች የተመከለቱትን ሥልጣንና ተግባር ይኖሩታል፡፡

1) በከተማው ውስጥ የኦሮሞ ቋንቋ፣ ባህል፣ ታሪክ እንዲጠበቅ፣ እንክብካቤ እንዲያገኝ ፖሊሲና ሕግ ያወጣል፤ የከተማ አስተዳደሩም የማስፈፀም ግዴታ ይኖራዋል፡፡

2) በከተማው አስተዳደር ውስጥ ነባሪ የቦታ ስያሜዎች ተመልሰው እንዲያንሰራሩ ሕግ ያወጣል፡፡

3) በከተማው አስተዳደር ምክር ቤት ውስጥ የሚወከሉ የኦሮሞ ተወላጅ ተወካዮችን አባላት ይመርጣል፡፡

4) ኦሮሞዎችን ወክለው የከተማ አስተዳደሩን የሚመሩ የሥራ ሃለፊዎች ከንቲባ እና ሌሎች የካቢኔ አባላትን ተጠቁመው በምክር ቤቱ እንዲጸድቅ ያስደርጋል፡፡

5) በአዋጁ ውስጥ የተደነገጉ የከተማ አስተዳደሩ ነዋሪ የኦሮሞ ብሔር ተወላጆች መብቶችና ጥቅሞች በትክክል ተግባራዊ መሆናቸውን ይከታተላል፡፡

6) ጉባዔውን የሚመራ አፈ ጉባዔ፣ ምክትል አፈጉባዔና ሌሎች ሃላፊዎችን ይመርጣል፡፡

7) ጉባዔው ስራውን በአግባቡ ለመፈፀም እንዲያስችለው ልዩ ልዩ አደረጃጀት ሊኖረው ይችላል፡፡

8) ጉባዔው የአሰራር ስርዓት መመሪያ ሊያወጣ ይችላል፡፡

19/ የጉባዔው ዋና መሥሪያ ቤት

1) የጉባዔው ዋና መሥሪያ ቤት አድራሻ ፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ነው፡፡

2) ጉባዔው እንደአስፈላጊነቱ በከተማው የአስተዳደር እርከኖች ቅርንጫፍ ጽሕፈት ቤቶች ሊኖሩት ይኖራዋል፡፡

20/ አርማ

ጉባዔው የራሱ አርማ ይኖረዋል::

21/ በጀት

የከተማው አስተዳደሩ ምክር ቤት ለጉባዔው ሥራ የሚያስፈልገውን በጀት ከጉባዔው በሚቀርብለት ጥያቄ መሰረት የመመደብ ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

22/ የጉባዔው የሥራ ዘመን

የጉባዔው የሥራ ዘመን 5 ዓመት ሆኖ የከተማ አስተዳደሩ ምክር ቤት ምርጫ ተካሂዶ በአዲስ መልክ ሲዋቀሩ ይኸውም ጉባዔ በአዲስ መልክ ይዋቀራል፡፡

ክፍል አራት:- ስለ የጋራ ምክር ቤት መቋቋም

23/ የጋራ ምክር ቤት መቋቋም

የኦሮሚያ ክልል በፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ከተማ አስተዳድር ውስጥ ስላለው ልዩ ጥቅምን አስመልክቶ የወጡትን ሕጎች ተግባራዊነት የሚከታተልና የሚያስፈፅም ከክልሉ ወይም ከጉባዔውና አስተዳደሩ የተውጣጣ የጋራ ምክር ቤት ከዚህ በኋላ “የጋራ ምክር ቤት“ ተብሎ የሚጠራ በዚህ አዋጅ ተቋቁሟል፡፡

24/ የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ ዋና መሥሪያ ቤት

1) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ ዋና መሥሪያ ቤት አድራሻ ፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ነው፣

2) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ በከተማው የአስተዳደር እርከን በየትኛውም ስፍራ የተለያዩ አደረጃጀትና ቅርንጫፍ ጽሕፈት ቤት ሊኖረው ይችላል፤

25/ አርማ

የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ የራሱ አርማ ይኖረዋል::

26/ የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ ሥልጣንና ተግባር

የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ የሚከተሉት ሥልጣንና ተግባር ይኖሩታል፡፡

1) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ በዚህ አዋጅ የተደነገጉ ጥቅሞች፣ በምክር ቤቱና ጉባዔው የሚወጡ ፖሊሲዎች፣ ስትራቴጂዎች፣ ዕቅዶችና ሕጎች መፈፀማቸውን ይከታተላል፣ ያረጋግጣል፣

2) በክልሉና በአስተዳሩ የጋራ ጉዳዩች ላይ ተጨማሪ ጥናቶች እንዲደረጉ ይደረጋል፤ ሲፀድቁም ተግባራዊ እንዲሆኑ ይደረጋል፣

3) የጋራ ም/ቤቱ በክልሉና በአስተዳሩ ላይ ያለውን ልዩ ጥቅም አስመልክቶ የወሰናቸውን ውሣኔዎች የሚቃረን ውሣኔ ማንኛዉም አካል መወሰን አይችልም፡

4) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ የኦሮሞ ብሔር ተወላጆች በአፋን ኦሮሞ የሚማሩበትን ትምህርት ቤት መስተዳድሩ መክፈቱን፣ መገንባቱን፣ የመምህራንና ለመማር ማስተማር የሚያስፈልጉትን ግብዓቶች መሟላቱን ይከታተላል ያስፈፅማል ፡፡

5) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ በልማት ምክንያት ለሚነሱ የኦሮሞ ብሔር ተወላጆች መብትን ያስጠብቃል በዘላቂነት መቋቋም እንዲችሉ የመልሶ ማቋቋሙን ሥራ ይከታተላል ያስፈፅማል፡፡

6) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ ስራውን በአግባቡ ለመፈፀም እንዲያስችለው ልዩ ልዩ አደረጃጀት ሊኖረው ይችላል፡፡

7) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱን የአሰራር ስርዓት መመሪያ ሊያወጣ ይችላል፡፡

27/ የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ አመሠራረት

1) 44 አባላት ያሉት በክልሉ ወይም ከጉባዔውና ከአስተደዳሩ በተውጣጡ አባላት ምክር ቤቱ ይቋቋማል፡፡

2) 22 አባላት ከክልሉ ወይም ከጉባዔው ይወከላሉ፡፡

3) 22 አባላት ከአስተዳደሩ ምክር ቤት ይወከላሉ፡፡

4) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ ሰብሳቢ ከጉባዔው ከተወከሉት አባላት መካከል ይሆናል፡፡

5) የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ ም/ሰብሳቢ በአስተዳደሩ ምክር ቤት ከተወከሉት አባላት መካከል ይሆናል፡፡

6) ምክር ቤቱ ቋሚ ጽ/ቤት፣ ድጋፍ ሰጪ ሠራተኞች እና ሙያተኞች ይኖሩታል፡፡

28/ በጀት

የከተማው አስተዳደሩ ምክር ቤት ለጋራ ምክር ቤቱ ሥራ የሚያስፈልገውን በጀት ከጋራ ምክር ቤቱ በሚቀርብለት ጥያቄ መሰረት የመመደብ ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

29/ የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ የሥራ ዘመን

የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ የሥራ ዘመን 5 ዓመት ሆኖ የፊነፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ምክር ቤት እና የጉባዔው ምርጫ ተካሂዶ በአዲስ መልክ ሲዋቀሩ ይኸውም የጋራ ምክር ቤቱ በአዲስ መልክ ይዋቀራል፡፡

ክፍል አምስት:- ልዩ ልዩ ድንጋጌዎች

30/ መተባበርና የመፈፀም ግዴታ

1) ይህን አዋጅ እና አዋጁን ተከትሎ የሚወጡትን ደንቦችና መመሪያዎች ሥራ ላይ ለማዋል ማናቸውም ሰው ወይም አካል የመተባበር ግዴታ አለበት፡፡

2) የከተማ አስተዳደሩ እና የአስተዳደሩ መንግስታዊ አካላት በሙሉ አዋጁን የመፈፀም ግዴታ አለባቸው፡፡

31/ የአዋጁን አፈፃፀም ስለመቆጣጠር

1) የሕዝብ ተወካዮች ምክር ቤት እና ጨፌ ኦሮሚያ ይህን አዋጅና በአዋጁ መሰረት የሚወጡትን ደንቦችና መመሪያዎች በትክክል ስራ ላይ መዋላቸውን የመቆጣጠር ሥልጣንና ኃላፊነት ይኖራቸዋል፡፡

2) የኢ.ፌ.ደ.ሪ. መንግሥት የሚኒስትሮች ም/ቤት እና ክልላዊ መንግስቱ ይህን አዋጅና በአዋጁ መሰረት የሚወጡትን ደንቦችና መመሪያዎች በትክክል ስራ ላይ መዋላቸውን የመከታተልና የመደገፍ ሥልጣንና ኃላፊነት ይኖራቸዋል፡፡

32/ ተፈፃሚነት ስለማይኖራቸው ህጐች

ይህን አዋጅ ጋር የሚቃረን ማንኛውም ሕግ፣የአዲስ አበባ ከተማ አስተዳደር ቻርተር አዋጅ ፣ መመሪያ፣ የአሠራር ልምዶች ወይም ውሳኔዎች በዚህ አዋጅ ውስጥ የተደነገጉ ጉዳዮች በሚመለከት ተፈፃሚነት አይኖራቸውም፡፡

33/ ደንብና መመሪያ የማውጣት ሥልጣን

1) የኢ.ፌ.ደ.ሪ. መንግሥት የሚኒስትሮች ም/ቤት ይህን አዋጅ ለማስፈፀም ደንብ ሊያወጣ ይችላል፡፡

2) ጉባዔው እና የአስተዳደሩ ምክር ቤት ይህን አዋጅና በአዋጁ መሰረት የሚወጣውን ደንብ ለማስፈፀም መመሪያ ሊያወጡ ይችላሉ፡፡

34/ አዋጁ የሚፀናበት ጊዜ

ይህ አዋጅ በፌዴራል ነጋሪት ጋዜጣ ታትሞ ከወጣበት ቀን ጀምሮ የፀና ይሆናል፡፡

ፊንፊኔ/አዲስ አበባ ……….. ቀን 2009 ዓ.ም

ሙላቱ ተሾመ(ዶ/ር)

የኢትዮጵያ ፌዴራላዊ ዲሞክራሲያዊ ሪፐብሊክ ፕሬዚዳንት

 

You can also get the full copy here: Draft Proclamation of Oromia Special Interest in Finfinnee/Addis Abeba

Gada system, an indigenous democratic socio-political system of the Oromo, inscribed on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity

Gada system, an indigenous democratic socio-political system of the Oromo, inscribed on the Representative List of the Intangible Cultural Heritage of Humanity. This decision was made at the eleventh session of the Intergovernmental Committee for the Safeguarding of the Intangible Cultural Heritage takes place in the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa Conference Centre in Addis Ababa, from 28 November to 2 December 2016.

Gada is a traditional system of governance used by the Oromo people in Ethiopia developed from knowledge gained by community experience over generations. The system regulates political, economic, social and religious activities of the community dealing with issues such as conflict resolution, reparation and protecting women’s rights. It serves as a mechanism for enforcing moral conduct, building social cohesion, and expressing forms of community culture.

Gada is organized into five classes with one of these functioning as the ruling class consisting of a chairperson, officials and an assembly. Each class progresses through a series of grades before it can function in authority with the leadership changing on a rotational basis every eight years. Class membership is open to men, whose fathers are already members, while women are consulted for decision-making on protecting women’s rights. The classes are taught by oral historians covering history, laws, rituals, time reckoning, cosmology, myths, rules of conduct, and the function of the Gada system. Meetings and ceremonies take place under a sycamore tree (considered the Gada symbol) while major clans have established Gada centres and ceremonial spaces according to territory. Knowledge about the Gada system is transmitted to children in the home and at school.

 

See more at:http://www.unesco.org/culture/ich/en/RL/gada-system-an-indigenous-democratic-socio-political-system-of-the-oromo-01164

Open letter to Pastor Tolessa Gudina: DENOUNCING your HATE SPEECH directed against the Oromo People

By: Ogessa Duri

Pr. Toelessa, you claim that God only knows “Ethiopia.” The fact is that in the original the term translated into “Ethiopia” when the Hebrew Bible was turned into the Greek, is “Kush.” To this day, the original manuscripts bear the reference to “Kush,” and not Ethiopia. Apparently, despite your claim of scholarly religious study, tagging your name with the inescapable title of a “Dr.”; you display both utter ignorance and a well calculated campaign of hate against Cushitic identities and languages you name and disparage through your denouncement delivered under the pretext of a religious sermon.

You also claim that being Oromo or identifying oneself as such is the violation of the first of the Ten Commandments: “I am the Lord, your God.You shall not have false idols before me.” You claim that native identities are akin to worshipping idols which, hence, a violation of this Biblical law. This is probably the worst of a long list of other assaults and insults you have declared against the Oromo people and their heritage under the pretense of preaching the Gospel for years now. You are telling an entire nation of millions who never chose to be born to an Oromo family, but only through the “will of God,” the order of nature, that it is a cardinal sin to be what they are created to be; and to speak the language they learned from their parents to speak. You are employing a sinister and deceptive ploy of using people’s sacred reverence of God to demonize the Oromo people, their language, culture, and history. There is no time to enumerate the heretical and pernicious nature of your claims, its theological fallacies and the spiritual deception you are concocting with this line of interpretation of the Sacred book. In fact, the only proper way to view you your words is as a direct assault, by a wolf in sheep’s clothing, a religious extremist preaching hateful politics. You may claim that your words are prophetic, speaking truth, however, the only truth that can be gleaned from your words is that you are malicious and devoid of any insight that can build up life. Your work practically promotes the development of denigration, denial and hatred against the Oromo and against one another.

The Oromo are a great people with a solid clear understanding of who they are, and where they come from, having beautiful culture, possessing profound dignity for their heritage, and displaying nothing but generosity to all their neighbors with which they share the Ethiopian system. They are not oppressing or terrorizing any other ethnic group politically, nor have they forced their language or culture on others. They have never tried to degrade, demean or dismantle the ethnic identity and heritage of others. However, all of these atrocities and more have been committed against them. To this day, the response of the Oromo is to seek freedom, justice, and respect for their God given rights to live and prosper on their land and in mutual respect with others. However, this respectful and prosperous coexistence is only and only ensured if their identity is not denounced in the manner you shamelessly did and continue to do; their language is respected in their native land, their right to elect their own leaders is ensured, and they are allowed to benefit from the resources that they toil to benefit from perpetually. In order to achieve these noble, “God given” rights, they have been struggling every imaginable form of dispossession and tyranny for over a century. And it is truly disgusting to see you as a religious person that leads an Amharic speaking church to diminish this great nation’s desire to embrace and assert their identity, cherish their language, culture, and values. You are in effect inciting and propagating the hateful sentiments and derision that already exists between some corners in the society against the Oromo. In order to seal that with a false divine stamp, you also label self respect and dignity as idol worship.

Pr. Toeless Gudina, aren’t you born from Oromo father and Oromo mother, yourself? Didn’t you grow up speaking this language, nurtured by an Oromo community that raised you? Were they also worshipping idols when they did those things for you? Have you no shame when you insult the very God you claim to speak for who created you as Oromo? Didn’t the first preachers that brought the gospel to you speak to you in Oromo language? Weren’t the first protestant churches out of which you emerged among the Oromo. Wasn’t a dignified Oromo, one of the pioneers who planted these churches, and advanced the message of the Gospel, after claiming freedom from slavery, translate this very Bible you use into the Oromo language? Are you saying he too was an idol worshipper? How can millions of people who only want to live in dignity as Oromo be so reviled by you, and your God? And who is this God you worship? Is he same God that loves the Oromo people? Or is he filled with hate towards them too like you are? How can you as a pastor supposedly preaching the God of love be promoting hatred and bigotry for the Oromo nation among your Amharic speaking listeners and followers, and the entire Ethiopia? How can you promote prejudice through subtle malice and cynicism, and using supposed divine authority? The questions are endless that can be posed to you and you will continue to confront, but it is not the purpose of this statement to write them all here. So we rest it with our utter disgust for your attacks against a people that never harmed you or any one else for their identity, beyond seeking the respect of their own.

We, as Oromo Christians, just like you, would like to make clear to all that listen to you that the days when the Bible or Christianity is twisted, and used to enslave Oromos is long over. It has come, and it has gone. The Oromo nation has survived the worst forms of blatant attacks from religious hacks like you innumerable times and instances in the past. It rejects this attempt as well, and the nation will make sure that you and those like you who promote injustice hiding behind the pulpit and the Bible will not succeed. It is tragic that you, a native Oromo, have become such a tool for forces of evil in this world, but you are not the first one, nor will be the last. Remember, for every Tolessa, there are millions of Oromos that have practically rejected your propositions, and will continue to do so. They will continue to work to end the endless sins of dispossession committed against their heritage and the heritage of many other people groups in Ethiopia in the name of “God.” We would like to vehemently assert our outright rejection of your hate campaign against the Oromo people, and demand that you immediately stop using the pulpit, and the name of God, to spread malice against a peaceful nation. The Oromo are created equal to all other peoples and their heritage deserves the same respect and honor. Your work and the efforts of those who, through deception try to keep the Oromo mind forever enslaved will not succeed. We demand that you apologize for all the hateful and disparaging words you have declared in this instance and many other instances against the Oromo nation. We strongly urge you to realize the damage you are doing to the truth and innocent people with blatant lies and distortions. We demand that you refrain from promoting this sort of hate speech through the pulpit against the Oromo or any other people or language in Ethiopia or anywhere in the world!

With regards,

 

 

Sirbi Haacaaluu Hundeessaa ‘Maalan Jiraan’ Badhaafame

Suraa: Sirni Badhaasaa Hooteelaa Sharaatanitti yeroo adeemsifamu

Sirbi Haacaaluu Hundeessaa ‘Maalan Jiraa’ fillannoo Dire Tube.Com oonlaayiiniitiin gaggeesseen ‘Viidiyoo Muuziqaa Bareedaa kan bara 2015’ jedhame  badhaafame. Filannoo kanaratti sirboonni naannoo 20 ta’an (baay’een isaanii Afaan Amaaraatiin kan sirban yoo ta’an, Afaan Tigreetiin, Afaan Guraageetiin fi Afaan birootiinis kan sirbamani dha)  dorgomiif kan dhiyaatan yoo ta’u, sirbi Haacaaluu ‘Maalan Jiraan’ sagaleee kuma torbaa ol argachuun ‘Best Music Video of 2015’ jedhame badhaafameera.

Saganataan kenninsa badhaasaa Diree Tiyuub qopheesse Hoteelaa Sharaatanitti gaafa Bitootessa 26/2016 kan adeemsifame yeroo ta’u, Haacaaluu bakka bu’uudhaan Amansiisaa Ifaa badhaasaa kenname fuudhatee jira. Viidiyoo muuziiqaa ‘Maalan Jiraa’ kan daayrektii godhee kan qopheesse Amansiisa Ifaa ture. Sagantaa kanuma irratti Alii Birraa wellisaa umurii dheeraa ‘legendary award’ Dirree Tiyuubiin (Dire Tube) badhaafameera.

Haacaaluu Hundeessaa, dargaggoo muuziqaa Oromoo sadarkaa olaanitti  ceesise ta’u namoonni hedduun irratti waliigalu.Waggaa jaha dura albamii muuziqaa ‘Sanyii Mootii’ jedhuun kan uummata Oromoo biratti fudhatama guddaa kan argate yeroo ta’u, eragsiiti sirboota ergaa cimaa qaban kan qabsoo uummata Oromoo irratti xiyyeeffatan sirbuudhaan Haacaaluun baay’ee jaalatamaa ta’eera. Sirbi isaa ‘Maalan Jiraa’ jedhu immoo daran dandeetti isaa kan muli’ise ture. Walaloo, yeedalloo fi akka itti sirbichi viidiyoon qindaa’e Oromoota biratti qofaa osoo hinta’aan namoota Afaan Oromoo hindhageenye birratti fudhatam guddaa kan argate ture.

Sirbi kun abbaa biyyummaa Oromoon Finfinnee irratti qabu seenaan walqabsiise kan dhiyeessu yeroo ta’u, yeroo ammaa kana garuu Finfinneen Oromoo harkaa baatee harka ormaa akka galte xiiqii guddaatiin kaasa. Oromoota hedduu birratti ‘Maalan Jiraan’ hojii muuziqaa guddaa (master piece) akka ta’etti fudhatama.

Badhaasa muuziqaa  warri habashaa qopheesan irratti sirbi Afaan Oromoo yeroo jalqabaaf kan kaadhimames kan moo’es sirba Haacaaluu ‘Maalan Jira’ jedhuuni dha. Kun immoo kan agarsiisu yeroo dhiyoo keessatti sirboonni Afaan Oromoo sirboota habashaa waliin waldorgomee bakka guddaa irra taa’uu akka danda’u kan mirkaneesse dha.

THE SPECIAL INTEREST: THE AFFIRMATION OF DENIAL

 

Radio Afuura Biyyaa's photo.
By Tsegaye R Ararssa (PhD)

1. Introduction
As a response to the comprehensive Oromia-wide resistance to the Master Plan, the officials of the Federal and the State governments have, rather inconsistently and half-heartedly, indicated that the implementation of the Master Plan is now stopped. The Prime Minister, the Speaker of the Federal Parliament, the Government Spokesperson, the Oromia State President, and the Spokesperson of the Oromia Government have all remarked that the Master Plan is not going to be implemented without the consent of the people. In what seems to be the production of consent, the government has now engaged in a “discussion” with the public to condemn the protests, hunt down the active protestors, and force a vow of commitment to the government’s “development plans” (which implicitly includes the Master Plan as well). In the meantime, massive arrest of protestors, even shootings and killings are still continuing. The resistance is also continuing rather sporadically. The Command Post chaired by the Prime Minister and the Joint Counter-Terror Task Force are taking what the Prime Minister and all the officials called a “definitive measure” on the protestors. In doing so, they have completely rendered the State Government superfluous. They didn’t even try to seek a formal Federal Intervention Order or Emergency Declaration as per the requirements of the Constitutions. They didn’t even consider the option to use the law as a mode of disavowal of responsibility and depersonalization of power, which makes them easy targets for those considering taking these officials to account before various international tribunals. While all this is going on, the otherwise invisible Government of Oromia has issued a statement that they have established a task force to define the Constitutional Special Interest of Oromia over Addis Ababa. This has redirected attention from the Master Plan to exactly what the task force is going to do in its attempt to enunciate the content of the Special interest.

This is not surprising given the fact that one of the reasons for the resistance to the Master Plan was that it overwhelms and eliminates the Special Interest thereby violating the clause in Article 49 of the FDRE constitution. But the question in the minds of the public and all interested observers remains: just what is this special interest?

In this piece, I consider this question from a legal point of view. In so doing, I will first try to offer the context within which this ‘Special Interest’ clause of the constitution came about. I will then examine the provisions in art 49(5) of the constitution with a view to indicating, suggestively, what exactly the content could be. I will also try to trace the Special Interest in the Context of the Master Plan that rendered it invisible and/or irrelevant.

Finally, I will reflect on the fear and the tragedy of the violence in relation to Addis Ababa by linking it to its genealogical antecedents rooted in its foundational moments, the moments of inaugural violence. Here, I will make few assertions about the burden of imperial history, the curse of illegitimacy that was never overcome, the irredeemable failure of state- and nation-building that keeps bleeding a people whose wounds never healed, whose hopes have always been deferred, and whose voice is being denied expression and a hearing. Throughout this piece, I argue that the move to articulate the special interest by the Task Force, while long overdue and therefore an appropriate political gesture in the right direction, might be just another move to align the contents of the ‘special interest’ clause with the objectives of the Master Plan and legally water it down or erase it altogether.


2. The Context
The notion of Oromia’s ‘Special Interest’ entered the Ethiopian legal universe in 1992 through the instrumentality of the Proclamation that established National/Regional Self Governments (Proclamation No. 7/ 1992). This is the proclamation that set the blue print for what came later to be the constituent units of the Ethiopian Federation. Adopted to give effect to the decentralization that was envisaged in the Transitional Charter—and to valorize the right of ethno-national groups to self-determination—it established 14 self-governing national regions. Accordingly, Oromia became one of the 14 self-governing States. Addis Ababa, like the City of Harar, was also a region in its own right. Oromia’s ‘special interest’ over both cities was first recognized in this piece of legislation. In Article 3 (4), it is provided that the special interests and political right of the Oromo over Region Thirteen [Harari] and Region Fourteen [Addis Ababa] are reserved. These Regions shall be accountable to the Central Transitional Government and the relations of these Self-Governments with the Central Transitional Government shall be prescribed in detail by a special law.


Very much like the provision in Art 49 (5) of the Constitution that came later, it envisaged a ‘special law’ (meant to clarify the relation of accountability to the Central Government), but such a law was never promulgated. It is interesting to observe that, unlike in the constitution, in this transitional period law, the Oromo has not just a “special interest” but also a political right over the two self-government regions. It is also important to observe that there is no attempt to delimit the boundary of the city. As a result, it was not clear as to where exactly the jurisdiction of the government of Addis Ababa ends and that of Oromia commences.


While it looked like a city state in a federation, Addis Ababa was also seen as a city within a larger state, i.e., Oromia. In other words, administratively, it was an enclave falling outside of Oromia while also housing the Government of Oromia as its capital. In a sense, Addis Ababa is in Oromia, but not of Oromia. Oromia was a State governing from Addis Ababa without, however, governing Addis Ababa itself. While the meaning of ‘special interest’ was understood to mean much more than having a seat for the Oromia government in the city, for the entire period of the transitional times, this remained to be the only ‘interest’ Oromia could obtain.


The concept of Oromia’s special interest was thus injected into the language of public law in the country accompanying the shift away from a formerly unitary state to what was subsequently to become a ‘multinational federation’. Acutely sensitive to the rights of sub-national groups (called ‘Nations, Nationalities, and Peoples’) in Ethiopia, this ‘ethno-federalization’ was a reaction, and a push back, to the goings-on in history. We can thus see its immense historical import in its potency to speak both to the past and to the future. The ‘special’ in the ‘special interest’ phrase hails not only from the mere fact of geographic location of Addis Ababa in Oromia but also from the implicit recognition of the essentially Oromo identity of the city. Historians have routinely described the fact that, until it was violently raided and occupied by the forces of the Shoan Kingdom in the 19th century, the city was inhabited by the Oromo.

When it was ‘founded’ as the capital of the modern Ethiopian Empire in 1888, it was set as a launching pad for the campaigns of imperial conquest on the peoples of the Southern, South-Eastern, and South-Western peripheries. With a violent beginning marked by conquest and occupation of the land; raid, massacre, and displacement of the population; and transformation of the cultural and environmental terrain by the soldiers, it started as a garrison town. A cursory glance at writings by William Harris, Alexander Bulatovich, and even Evelyn Waugh, indicates that the State operated in Addis Ababa as an occupying force of settler colonialists bent on pushing out and displacing the indigenous Oromo peoples. Because the settlers generally spoke Amharic and confessed the Ethiopian Orthodox faith and because of the disproportionate concentration of modern urban facilities in Addis Ababa, it became increasingly different culturally from its surroundings.

Consequently, it projected a cultural life that is different from that of the Oromo. The culture, identity, and language of the Oromo became the constitutive outside of the cultural life in the city. In time, the Oromo were effectively marginalized and otherized. For most of the 20th century, the Oromo, although historically the host, was forced to live like the alien and the guest in what was their own homeland. Informed by this memory and propelled by years of national liberation struggles, the politicians that negotiated the Transitional Charter (Proc. 1/1991) and made the law (Proc. 7/1992) sought to emphasize the need to acknowledge the Oromo presence in the city’s affair through the ‘special interest’. The ‘special interest’ package was thus a way of making up for the artificial (created or intentionally produced) absence of the Oromo. In other words, it was a method of presenting the absent, a way of bringing back the Oromo to its own.


3. The Law
When the constitution of FDRE was finally adopted in 1995, the ‘special interest’ clause was more or less carried over into art 49(5). To understand the full textual context of the special interest package in art 49 (5), it is important for us to reproduce the entirety of article 49 in full. Accordingly, the provision in art 49 reads as follows:
49(1) Addis Ababa shall be the capital city of the Federal State.
49(2) The residents of Addis Ababa shall have a full measure of self-government. Particulars shall be determined by law.
49(3) The Administration of Addis Ababa shall be responsible for the Federal Government.
49 (4) Residents of Addis Ababa shall in accordance with the provisions of this constitution, be represented in the House of Peoples’ Representatives.
49(5) The special Interest of the State of Oromia in Addis Ababa, regarding the provision of social services or the utilization of natural resources and other similar matters, as well as joint administrative matters arising from the location of Addis Ababa within the State of Oromia, shall be respected. Particulars shall be determined by law.

Space won’t allow a full length analysis of the first four sub-articles. Consequently, I will concentrate only on art 49(5) in this piece. Owing to the unclarity of the clause in art 49 (5), coupled with the lack, to date, of the law constitutionally envisaged to enunciate the content, it became imperative for people to ask “just what is the ‘special interest’?” In this section, we make a close reading of the provision to explore what could be in the package.
Let me make a couple of preliminary points before I go into the content of the ‘special interests.’ First off, it is important to underscore that Addis Ababa is a Federal capital city within a State. In this it is more like Berne (of Switzerland) or Ottawa (of Canada). Once that is admitted, i.e., that Addis Ababa is a city in Oromia, one should have an explicit discussion and mutual understanding about what it means to be a federal capital because that automatically indicates that the Federal Government doesn’t have a ‘natural’ right to be in the city. That discussion didn’t happen. That is a historical blunder about a city mired in several historical misdeeds and mistakes. That it was made accountable solely to the Federal Government was the second big blunder at the time of adopting the constitution. Given the fact that the city is in Oromia and that it is also a ‘natural’ capital of the government of Oromia, it should have been made accountable to Oromia. Or at the very least, it should have dual accountability to both the Federal and Oromia Government. That didn’t happen. Commanding exclusive say on the administration of the city (in the name of ultimate accountability), the federal government ‘banished’ the Oromia government at will in 2003 and allowed it back in the city in 2005. In this, the federal government expanded and re-enacted the original violence of dispossession and displacement of Oromos from the city thereby perpetrating a new wound before the historical wounds could heal. Had it not been for this constitutive mistake, this ‘original sin’ of constitutional drafting in 1995, there wouldn’t have been anything special about the special interest of Oromia. If there would be ‘special interest’, it would have been that of the Federal Government or the non-Oromo residents of the city. These twin mistakes of recent history led to events of dire consequence that claim lives and limbs to date.
Having made a guest out of the host through the legal fiction of excision, i.e., by excising the city out of the political and administrative jurisdiction of Oromia, it became necessary for Ethiopia, almost as an afterthought, to ‘concede’ a lame ‘special interest’ to Oromia in Art 49(5). Over the years, the government of Oromia and Oromos in general hung on this provision more as a symbolic rallying point to interrogate Ethiopia for what is actually beyond the interest in the city. To the Oromo public, the city became the metaphor for what Ethiopia has made of the Oromo in general: an invisible, non-speaking, non-acting other who inhabits the interior of the territory but the exterior of the polity. It became the concentrated expression of the ‘life’ and the agony of the Oromo in the Ethiopian polity: the present-absence and the absent presence at a time. Today, the Federal State presided over by TPLF/EPRDF became the new empire in a federal form, and the leaders became the new emperors in a democratic-republican garb. This forced the quip ‘plus ca change, plus c’est la meme chose’ (‘the more it changes, the more it remains the same’) from many an Oromo politician.
Hence, the wide Oromo discontent over the whole arrangement with regards to Addis Ababa. Taking advantage of the historic asymmetry in power, the city administration, mostly prompted by the federal government, has consistently acted in complete neglect or wilful defiance of the interests of Oromia and Oromos. Taking advantage of the undefined territorial boundary of the city, the administration continued to expand its competence over the suburbs surrounding Addis Ababa. Routinely, the Federal and the City Governments exploited the legal silence on the matter of special interest. Thus, the Addis Ababa Land Administration office often acted as the authority in charge of land administration in areas such as Labbuu, the Laga Tafo-Marii continuum, Bole-Bulbula, Buraayyuu, Sabbata, Sululta, and districts beyond the Akaki-Qalittii corridor. The Federal Government continued to implement its industrialization policy by reserving Industrial Zones, Recreation Parks, and designated investment sites (much like Special Economic Zones). In doing all these things, the Federal Government cum the city never took the trouble to consult with Oromia, much less the Oromo people. Evictions of farmers with little or no compensation became a routine practice.
Pollutions from industrial emissions were sustained with no sense of accountability from the part of the city. Waste was dumped recklessly causing massive health risks. Deforestation and soil degradation was intensified in the neighbouring districts, especially after the rise of investment in flower farms, dairy farms, and poultry farms. Homelessness of the evicted farmers and residents started to be felt among the people. The response from the Government of Oromia was late, but it did come in the form of a 2009 Caffee Oromia proclamation that established a Special Zone of 17 districts and 36 towns in the area. Its attempt at legislative articulation of the ‘Constitutional Special Interest of Oromia over Addis Ababa’ remained a draft to date.
Also, Oromo residents of the inner city resented the absence of Schools and cultural centres that operate in Afaan Oromo. The fact that the city has become anything but Oromo over the years made Oromo residents lament the complete cultural insensitivity to the needs of the Oromo in the city. Increasingly, the demand for schools in Afaan Oromo and cultural centres began to be vocally expressed in the last decade or two (resulting in efforts to construct an Oromo Cultural Centre and to open public schools that operate in Afaan Oromo).
While such demands were gaining momentum steadily over the years, the Integrated Regional Development Plan (alias the Master Plan) was announced to the public in 2014. Immediately, it provoked a resistance in all corners of the Oromia region. The day-to-day encroachment of Oromia’s jurisdiction with the informal expansion of the city; the general spill over effects of the city; its becoming the dumping ground for Addis Ababa waste for no gain; the pollution of the rivers, the soil, and the general environment of the surrounding districts and towns; the evictions with ‘compensations’ whose lower limits are legally left unregulated; the insensitivity to the cultural and linguistic needs of Oromo residents; the temperamental behaviour the Federal Government showed vis-à-vis Oromia’s claim to Addis Ababa as its capital city; these and other resentments fed the anger that emerged in the wake of the revelation of the Master Plan. Apart from its violation of the principles of federalism and a healthy intergovernmental relations that should exist in a working federation, one of the reasons given for resisting the Master Plan was that it liquidates the ‘special interest’ of Oromia. As was noted above, the particulars envisaged to ‘be determined by law’ were never determined. The recent move on the part of the Oromia government to establish a Task Force on the Special interest seems to be a response to that concern.
According to art 49 (5), the articulation of the content of the ‘special interest’ is hoped to revolve around the meaning of four broad phrases:
a. ‘Provision of social services’
b. ‘Utilization of natural resources’
c. ‘Joint administrative matters’
d. ‘Other matters’ similar to provision of social services or utilization of natural resources.
The Task Force is expected to interpret these phrases in a judicious manner that can also satisfy the popular discontent that was ignited into full manifestation in the protest to the Master Plan. In particular, it must identify the kind of social services that Addis Ababa should provide to Oromia. Normally, ‘social services’ connote services such as access to housing, education, health, water, transport, and other matters needed for achieving adequate living standards. From experience, we know that one of the unmet needs of Oromia in Addis Ababa is access to public buildings and properties for their offices and residential places for their officials and civil servants. And the need for designated plots of land on which to build houses for the employees of the state.
Organizing public schools that operate in Afaan Oromo is another kind of social service seen as a pressing need. Related but not often articulated is the need for building or making spaces for public libraries run in Afaan Oromo, exhibition centres, concert halls, theatres, museums, galleries, cinema halls, printing presses dedicated to the nurture and development of Oromo cultural lives, shows, performances, plays, memories, arts/paintings, movies, books, etc. This need to give attention to culture also requires the need for memorializing personalities and historical moments of the Oromo through naming streets, places, squares; and erecting statues. In addition, subsidizing Oromo arts and printing and publications as part of making the Oromo presence felt to anyone who comes to and inhabits the city is an important aspect of social service. In other words, the provision of social services also extends to the cultural representation of the Oromo in the life of the wider city.
Similarly, health facilities and other utilities such as public transport services that operate in Afaan Oromo should be considered part of the social services to be provided to Oromos. One way of addressing this could be making Afaan Oromo the co-equal working language of the City Government. The move to make Afaan Oromo and other languages to become working languages of the Federal Government will also help curb part of the problem of access to social services and facilities such as public transport, celebration and registration of vital events (birth, marriage, death, certification, authentication, licensing, etc).
Secondly, it must clarify the type of ‘natural resources’ Addis Ababa has that Oromia uses and the modes in which it continues to use them. Giving content to this phrase becomes amusing when we note the fact that there is hardly any natural resource that the city offers to Oromia. Anything ‘natural’ in the city is ipso facto that of Oromia because the city itself is of Oromia anyway. The city actually is dependent on the natural resources of Oromia. Water, forest products, hydroelectric supply, minerals, sand, cement products, precious stones, food products, and everything else that Ethiopia (beyond and above Addis Ababa) needs come from outside of the city, Oromia and the other regions. In the course of articulating this interest, one needs to consider the benefits Oromia should get from the delivery of these resources. One way of doing this is to agree on the percentage of income that should go back to Oromia’s revenue based on what is often called the principle of derivation in federal countries. If the federalism was properly functioning, this would have been handled through a negotiated channel of financial intergovernmental relations.
Thirdly, the law to be prepared by the Task Force must determine the scope and method of exercise of the envisaged ‘joint administration’. For this, we will first need to identify what tasks are matters for joint administration. Secondly, we need to decide who is responsible for what aspect of the administration. In the area of inter-jurisdictional roads (say maintenance); border management; managing trans-boundary forests, rivers, etc.; inter-jurisdictional legal cooperation (whose police takes responsibility for cross-border criminal activities); these and some such activities need to be spelt out. One obvious area of joint administration is management of land. Because legislative power over land issues is a matter for the federal government and administration is for the States, issues such as town planning, mapping, cadastre, land redistribution among residents, designing construction regulations, etc should have been a matter for states, districts, and local/municipality governments. And in these areas, local governments could find some collaboration. Accordingly, the government of the state of Oromia and the government of the Addis Ababa City could coordinate their activities as they have overlapping jurisdictions (i.e., Oromia has a territorial jurisdiction while the city has a self-administrative jurisdiction).
Ideally, ‘joint administration’ could have happened if the city was made accountable to the Government of Oromia rather than to the Federal Government. In the very least, joint administration could have been achieved through making the City government accountable to both the Federal and the Oromia governments. Settling on one of these options would mitigate the injustice of the original constitutional arrangement that: a) made Addis Ababa the capital city of the Federal government without the consent of the Oromos; and b) made the city’s self-government accountable exclusively to the Federal Government. If there was an inclusive participatory constitutional moment that acknowledges the presence of the Oromo in the polis-to-be between 1992 and 1994, one or more of the following scenarios might have been negotiated: a) find a (new) site that is commonly agreed upon by all the constituent members of the Federation to be the Federal District Territory; b) designate another city in another State or in Oromia as the seat of the federal government accountable to that state; c) designate different cities for different branches of the Federal Government; d) agree to have a roving capital city for the federal government every decade or so; e) designate Addis Ababa as the capital city with a self-governing council ultimately accountable to Oromia—a city of Oromia where the federal government may have some form of ‘special interest’; f) designate Addis Ababa as a federal capital city whose self-governing council will be accountable to both the federal and the Oromia governments.

The constitution-making process was less ideal than one would hope for. It was marked by lack of legitimacy on procedural and substantive accounts. The work that the Task Force does now will, while attending to the immediate needs of giving content to the ‘joint administrative issues’, identify potential areas of constitutional amendments that would overcome the problems caused by original flaws in the constitution. This will force the Task Force to engage in—and engage the public with–what I called, elsewhere, a ‘redemptive constitutional discourse,’ a discourse that overcomes the deficits in original legitimacy, a discourse that ‘corrects’ the imperfect beginnings of the constitution by also attending to the trauma caused by inaugural violence with which the city was incorporated into, and made the capital of, the modern imperial Ethiopian state.
While that is being done, the Task Force needs to be daring in searching for a long lasting solution to the violent Ethio-Oromia relations, especially regarding Addis Ababa. In particular, it needs to consider the possibility of relocating the Federal Government elsewhere. Removing the Federal government will help undo the trauma of the violent occupation at the moment of ‘founding’ and subsequent displacement of the Oromo through the ‘settlement’ of others. Until that is done through constitutional revision or amendment, it may be necessary to consider the shift of accountability of the city government from the Federal to the Oromia government. It may be imperative for the Federal Government to start paying rent to the Oromia government as a token of acknowledgement to their being hosted by Oromia.
Connected to this work of the Task Force to find a lasting solution is to identify unconstitutional laws and policies that violate Oromia’s rights and special interests. Laws such as the one that promulgated the Addis Ababa Charter of 2003 (Proc. 361/2003, especially its article 5), the Investment Amendment Proclamation of 2014 (Proc. 849/2014, especially its provisions regarding ‘Industrial Development Zones), and projects like the World Bank sponsored Industrial Zone Projects (such as the Resettlement Action Plan [of] the Kilinto Industrial Zone (April 2015) should all be rescinded. New laws may need to be issued. An example is a proclamation that governs the lowest threshold for rates and modes of compensation awarded to a farmer in the event of eviction from her/his land. To be sure, there was a 2005 Proclamation (Proc. 455/2005) that provides for expropriation of land holdings and compensation. However, this proclamation, apart from enhancing the dispossessive, regulatory and police powers of the Ministry of Federal Affairs, federal and local governments, and of several other agencies, it says little about the substance of the compensation, especially for collective landholdings (about which it says nothing). Needless, to say, as the actual practice of expropriation has routinely demonstrated, even the normative gesture in the law of providing a replacement remains to be more a legal rhetoric than an actual reality, more a juridical promise than a political practice.
By removing these and other similar roadblocks to joint administration proper, the Task Force may help both Ethiopia and Oromia imagine a more just relation through the instrumentality of the ‘special interest’.  The meaning of the ‘other issues’ over which Oromia has a special interest is to be decided contextually on the basis of issues that rear their head in the course of day-to-day life experience. One cannot be definitive about the list of things to be included in this category. However, twenty years of experience should have brought forth several such issues that may need to be specified while leaving others to the discretion of administrators subject to judicial review.
Having unpacked the meaning of these phrases, the other issue left for us to determine is who comes up with the law that “determines” the “particulars”: the Federal Government, the City Government, or the Government of Oromia? So far, the federal government had hesitated to legislate on the matter even in the face of a repeated demand by the government of the state of Oromia. That is of course because the federal government wants to exploit the ambiguity that remains because of the legal vacuum. Legal silence is strategically deployed to avoid their part of the obligation and to continue to enjoy what doesn’t rightfully belong to them in the absence of a law that proscribes it. Oromia’s attempt in the past (2006 et seq) to legislate on the matter could produce only a draft piece of legislation that couldn’t be presented to and passed by the Caffee Oromia.
4. The Burden of History: the Fear, the Curse, and the Tragic Consequence
Like everything else in Ethiopia, the city languishes under the heavy burden of history. As indicated in section two above, it had a bloody beginning. When it was ‘founded’ as the capital of the modern Ethiopian state, it was not planted in a terra nullius, an empty space that was masterless. The site which Empress Taitu chose as the place of settlement and named Addis Ababa had a name (Finfinne), a people (of the Galan, Gulele, and Abichu clans of the Oromo), and a life (natural and social). It has a story of a people who valiantly defended themselves against the barbaric raids directed at them from the north, including those by Haile Melekot and Sahleselassie of Shoa. The settlement of the imperial forces in the late 19th century was preceded by depopulation of the indigenous inhabitants of the place and deforestation of the area. It was then followed by the renaming of the place, erasure of its history, and degradation of cultures. Viewed as the pagan others (aremenie), the Oromo were effectively made the constitutive outside of the empire inhabiting, along with the other ‘others’ (in the wider South), the periphery of what was the Abyssinian core.

So constituted by the Menelikan imperial dispensation, Addis Ababa was an unnatural town in which the Oromo was an unwanted presence. When it is seen for what is (which is rare), it comes as a relic of a regretted past that should be overcome through civilization (or modernization) which is to be deployed to integrate the Oromo and all the other ‘others’ into what Levine felicitously called ‘Greater Ethiopia’. The modernization wedded into nation-building through ‘civilization’ (alias known as hager maqnat) run on the imperative that the Oromo and the other peoples of Ethiopia make way for the progress towards the supposed ‘manifest destiny’ the empire hoped to achieve. In short, the moment of encounter with the Oromo in Addis Ababa was marked by the violence of conquest (raid), occupation, enslavement, depopulation, and displacement. The moment was also remembered by the Oromo as a moment of material and cultural loss, politico-military humiliation, dispossession of land, disorientation of one’s way of life, expropriation of the means of livelihood, and wanton destruction of the natural environment. Settled by soldiers of various nobles of the court, it was culturally ‘other’ to the indigenous peoples of the area.
This violent ‘beginning’ is not just a legacy of the past. It is with us now mirrored in the most recent barbarity foisted upon the Oromo in the name of expanding the jurisdictional scope of the city to the surrounding towns and rural districts. The rationale back then was nation-building and unification. The name used today to describe the same process is ‘development’ and the march to our ‘millennial renaissance.’ The process back then involved outright dispossession of the land and enslavement/enserfment of the population. The process today is expropriation or eviction and rendering the population placeless and homeless. The settlers in the garrison town it was then were culturally alien to the people but viewed themselves as the ‘civilized’ (Christian) other. Today’s city dwellers are culturally alien to Oromia and view themselves as more civilized (because they are exposed to modern education and infrastructure and monetized economy) than their counterparts in Oromia. Their encounter looks like a confrontation of the cosmopolitan, urbanite, post-ethnic Addis Ababan with his/her other, i.e., the parochial, ruralite, ethno-nationalist Oromo.
The legacy of the past and its contemporary parallels betray a common fear: fear of extermination (physical and cultural). In the past, this was a fear of immediate and overt genocide and ethnocide. Today, it is a fear of gradual and covert genocide that started a century ago. Just as the Menelikan modernization evoked a fear of dismemberment as a people, the Master Plan evoked the fear of disintegration as Oromos. The key common feature of the Ethio-Oromia relation then and now is the lack of trust. Reeling from the memory of inaugural violence that continued through the instrumentality of bureaucratic violence during Haileselassie, they didn’t trust that the empire of the late 19th and the early 20th century has the best in its heart for the Oromo. Informed by the memory of a century of being absent-while-present in the city and steadily increasing marginalization in a city that is excised from its ‘mother State’, today’s Oromia hardly trusts the Ethiopian state as having the best in its heart for Oromia.
Where is this deficit of trust coming from? Whence this curse of mutual mistrust? Two sources readily come to the mind. First, the incapacity of the Ethiopian state to rectify its fractured relationship with Oromia. This is easily notable in the failure to acknowledge: a) the presence of the Oromo in the city; b) the presence of the city in Oromia; c) that this is the natural home of the Oromo person and that they deserve to be in the city (and in the polis) rightfully; d) the originary violence with which it was wrested from Oromos; and e) the existence of wounds that have yet to heal. Secondly, the failure of the Ethiopian state to generate legitimacy, especially among the Oromo and the ‘other’ peoples of Ethiopia to date. The fact that traditional sources of legitimacy (force, genealogy, and religion) have collapsed even in the Abyssinian core after the 1974 revolution and the fact that rational-formal legitimacy has not been generated through consensual constitution-making processes has forced the state to remain extrinsic to the society.

In the South and among the Oromo and the other ‘others’, the state is merely predatory appearing almost as the incarnation of the proverbial evil that has come “to steal, kill, and destroy.” Seen in this light, the Master Plan is a re-enactment and expansion of the inaugural violence, the violence of dispossession and displacement by an intrinsically imperial state in a federal-republican garb. The protest to the Master Plan is derived from the trauma of a deep wound that has yet to heal. It assumes a moral high ground because of the fundamental deficit in legitimacy (both at the moment of incorporation into the Ethiopian state and at the moment of re-constitution of the state as a “federal democratic republic” through a formal-rational constitution in 1995). The barbaric repression of the protest by the state (that resembles an explicit act of state terror administered by a Command Post and a Joint Counter-Terror Task Force) deepens the wound from originary violence and entrenches the fracture in original legitimacy of the state thereby making redemption nigh impossible. Herein lies the bigger tragedy of the contemporary relation of the Ethiopian state to its peoples. It is this monumental tragedy that forecloses the hope of getting traction through the articulation of the ‘special interest’.
5. Conclusions
The articulation of the ‘Special Interest’ package through a task force may be a right moral gesture as well as an expedient political manoeuvre. However, having seen the restriction of press freedom through legislation purported to protect freedom of press and information (2009); having witnessed the elimination of civil society organizations in the name of strengthening the legal framework for charities and societies (2009); having seen a raft of legislative amendments to the electoral laws rationalized as broadening electoral rights but curtailing the scope of free and fair elections; having seen several other laws (such as the law on federal intervention [2003]; the laws to ‘consolidate the powers of the House of Federation [2001] and the Council of Constitutional Inquiry [2001])—all of which whittled down the rights and free sphere of action of independent institutions; one has little to hope for as an outcome of this new attempt to legally enunciate the content of the ‘special interest’. Seen in the light of the experience of the Ethiopian state’s effective deployment of the language of law to encourage lawless use of power, the affirmation of the importance of legal articulation of the special interest may actually lead to denial of the right to the said ‘special interest’. Alas, affirmation it may well be, but perhaps merely an affirmation of denial. Whatever the outcome, it may now be too little, too late.

BBC Approves Afan Oromo as one of the Languages Used to Broadcast to Ethiopia

BBC

News coming from BBC Afaan Oromoo campaign organizers shows that BBC has approved that it will have Afaan Oromoo as one of its broadcast languages to Ethiopia. The other languages are Amharic and Tigrigna.

For this to happen, the Oromo activists based in the diaspora made a social media campaign after BBC announced in October 2015 that it would start radio broadcasts to Ethiopia and Eritrea, counties where it is believed there is deficiency in democracy.

However, BBC did not make it clear which languages it would use to broadcast to these two countries of the horn of Africa. It would be easier for many to guess that Amharic and Tigrigna will be the broadcast languages  of BBC’s new program to Ethiopia and Eritrea as Amharic is the language that is widely spoken in Ethiopia particularly in cities and towns and Tigrigna is used in Eritrea and Tigray, the northern region of Ethiopia.

Yet broadcasting to Ethiopia only in Amharic and Tigrigna wouldn’t be enough as almost half of the Ethiopian population speak Afaan Oromoo, the language of the Oromo people, the largest ethnic group in the country. Thus, Oromo activists took to the social media and campaigned to make the Oromos and others to sign a petition online. This way, around 40,000 people signed the petition and finally submitted to the BBC and the British government.

Now, news is coming out from the insiders in the BBC that BBC has approved that Afan Oromo will be one of the languages to used to broadcast to Ethiopia; the other languages are Amharic and Tigrigna. BBC has not official made any statements about  it; however,  a trusted source has told the BBC Afan Oromo campaigners about it.

The Oromos are already celebrating the decision by BBC by circulating the news on the social media and expressing their appreciation for the Oromo activists who initiated the campaign  and and made this to happen. They are also praising the BBC for making this historical decision.

 

 

WHAT FORCED OROMO LIBERATION FRONT (OLF) WITHDRAW FROM TRASITIONAL GOVERNMENT OF ETHIOPIA (TGE)?

By: Milkissa Ch.

Olf Flag

After the military government of Mengistu Hailemariam was removed in 1991,  the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) actively participated in establishing the Transitional government of Ethiopia (TGE).  Ethiopian Peoples’ Democratic Organization (EPRDF) was the dominant group within the TGE and the OLF was the second largest group in the TGE until June 1992. EPRDF, OLF and  other ethnic based poiltical organizations adopted the national charter in July 1991 by the democratic and peaceful transitional conference held in Addis Abeba/Finfinnee that set forth the interim government arrangements until a new constitution was adopted and national elections were held.

However, OLF could not continue in TGE more than eight months. In June 1992, OLF declared its withdrawal from the Transitional Government (TGE).This decision was a bad news for the millions of Oromos who see OLF as their only genuine political organization that represents the interest of the Oromos in the Ethiopian politics.

In 1992, OLF left TGE because EPRDF along with Eriterean Peoples’ Liberation Front (EPLF) did all they could to make OLF pull out of the TGE. The EPRDF leaders were not prepared to work with genuine Oromo organization that is capable of challenging them. Instead, they created a pseudo Oromo organization, the Oromo Peoples Democratic Organization (OPDO); to counteract the pressure coming from the OLF. The EPRDF led by Meles Zenawi, rejected OLF’s programs and directions, but demanded the OLF to completely submit to them which OLF found very insulting. This showed the EPRDF’s interest to destroy the largest and genuine Oromo front at the time.

The EPRDF leaders knew that the OLF leaders were competent enough to play their own roles in Ethiopian political affairs. The strength of OLF coupled with millions of the Oromos who rallied behind it, was a threat to EPRDF’s desire to control the political power for their own will in Ethiopia. As a result, the EPRDF leaders worked vigorously to destroy the OLF position in Oromiya. The EPRDF leaders and supporters were aware of the fact that the Oromo people have accepted OLF as their leader against any form of aggression and oppression.

The OLF fought for about 30 years for the cause of the Oromo and Oromiya. OLF made a significant contribution along with EPRDF and EPLF in throwing the government of Mengistu Hailemariam. OLF was active in east Oromiyaa around Hararge area, and in the west, in Wollega area. Most of the areas in west Wollega were liberated by OLF and that is why it is still highly supported by the Oromos in these areas.

The Oromo Liberation Front participated in the Transitional government for two reasons. First, OLF wanted to work with other competing forces to create new democratic Ethiopia in the future, which ensures freedom and equality to all nations and nationalities. They were very enthusiastic to see a democratic Ethiopia where every nations and nationalities could play their own part in building the new Ethiopia on equal terms. Second, if other forces failed to accept this direction but wanted to keep the tyranny and oppression, which the Oromos had experienced for years, OLF would opt to establish independent Oromiyaa by referendum. The EPRDF leaders accepted neither the first nor the second option, instead they continued on working how to maintain all the power for themselves. They wanted to own the whole country for themselves, chiefly Oromiyaa, the richest region in resources, without which they could not survive. In order for their dream come true, in every possible ways, they had to attack and offend OLF to leave the country.

The OLF leaders believed that TGE’S proposed electoral transition to a new, ethnically based federalism (the proposed ethnic federalism) would merely co-opt the OLF into yet another northern dominated system, and that Oromos would thereby forfeit an historic opportunity to achieve true sovereign independence for Oromiyaa. From late 1991 until shortly before the June elections, discussions between EPRDF and the OLF to defuse the armed conflict dominated political life in Ethiopia. Eventually, by early May 1992, EPRDF and OLF agreed to encamp their fighters before the regional and local elections. .

The dominant force in EPRDF, TPLF, was first established by university students who fled from univiersities (mainly from addis Abeba University) to Dedebit desert to begin armed struggle against Mengistu, the tyrant ruler of Ethiopia  who came to power after the 1974 revolution that led to the end of Haile Silassie’s 50 years rule. At the beginning the main agenda of TPLF leaders’ intention was to liberate Tigray, and its people from the Ethiopian empire. The Tigreans students who joined TPLF were proponents of the Marxist-Leninist ideologies and they wanted nothing but to apply this communist ideology in their future country, Great Tigray. For about 17 years, they fought the Derg and successfully liberated most of Tigray’s land.

In 1984, the people of Tigray experienced a worse famine and drought that resulted in the death of hundred thousands of people. By the way, the then TPLF leaders were blamed for using the aid money (raised by artists all over the world organized by Sir Bob Geldof) to buy armaments causing the death of thousands of people in Tigray though TPLF leaders denied the blame. This famine created a situation where many young Tigreans joined TPLF to escape the starvation. This boosted TPLF’s morale and made them victorious over Derg in many places.

Late 1980s, supported by the Western countries (mainly the USA) they enjoyed victories over the strong Derg military forces. These victories showed the TPLF leaders that they could defeat the Derg forces in areas outside Tigray, and control the whole country. As a result TPLF dropped its agenda of separation and changed its agenda to liberating the Ethiopian nationalities and nations.

The EPRDF leaders had developed a desire to maintain Ethiopia for their benefits by replacing Mengistu Hailemariam, a tyrant and dictatorial communist leader who ruled Ethiopia for 17. In order to look different from the former Habasha leaders, they came with the agenda of freeing the Ethiopian nations and nationalities from tyrant leaders. This was designed to appeal to the Ethiopian people, and gain support in the troubled country and make the nations and nationalities rally around them.

The TPLF leaders felt that if they advanced to Addis Abeba/Finfinnee without changing their front’s name to Ethiopian front they would not be accepted by the Ethiopian people. It would be wrong to think that a front that had been fighting for the liberation of the Tigreans would be entertained by other Ethiopians. Thus, the wise TPLF leaders carefully engineered a front that would represent all Ethiopians so that they could easily win people’s heart when they reach Finfinnee. In this regard, in 1989 TPLF leaders met with Ethiopian Peoples Democratic Movement (EPDM) (now it is known as the Amhara National Democratic Movement (ANDM)) and formed EPRDF. However, the formation of EPRDF by these two fronts had not been enough.

In EPRDF, there were fronts representing the Tigreans and the Amharas, but the Oromos, the largest population in Ethiopia had not been represented in EPRDF at that time. Before they controlled the country, the EPRDF leaders formed a pseudo Oromo political front , OPDO, to counter the genuine Oromo front i.e. OLF, an organization that fought for the cause of the Oromo and Oromiya.

The founders of EPRDF purposely ignored OLF because they were not ready to share power with a front fighting for the Oromo. To counter attack the position of OLF in Oromiya, EPRDF leaders kept on supporting the Oromo Peoples Democratic Organization (OPDO) whose founders were captured Derg fighters. The OPDO had no acceptance among the Oromos because OPDO was created by Oromo speaking habashas who never wanted to see liberated Oromiyaa. The members of OPDO were not Oromos as the name of their organization appears to indicate. Many of its members were Afaan Oromo speaking Tigreans and Amharas who whole heartedly supported the Tigreans liberation front. OPDO was established with the aim of countering OLF claim to represent the Oromo. The OPDO had no ideas, directions and programs for the Oromos as an independent organization. They were dependent on TPLF that took the initiative to form them.

The Oromo Peoples Democratic Organization (OPDO) was founded in 1990 at Dara District, Harbu Meskele, North Shewa in Oromiyaa by EPRDF in order to counter OLF though we lately heard  OPDO claiming that its birthplace was Adet a place in  Tigray. The TPLF led EPRDF knew that OLF leaders have a desire to liberate Oromiyaa from hundred years of colonial rule by the habashas. They were very well aware of the fact that if OLF was accepted by the Oromos then the liberation of Oromiyaa would be a reality. In the late 1980’s, as they realized that they were close to victory over Mengistu they thought how to keep Ethiopia and its resources for themselves.

At the beginning, when TGE was established, the EPRDF leaders looked so friendly, and started working with OLF towards making the realization of democratic Ethiopia feasible. The truth was that they invited OLF to work with them because they wanted to lure OLF to leave its question of liberating Oromiya, the agenda that OLF fought for more than thirty years. However, OLF, always doubted the reliability of EPRDF.

The election period showed the real personality of the EPRDF leaders. They placed obstacles to OLF campaign for the election, by killing the OLF cadres and supporters. In any way, the EPRDF leaders did not want to lose oromiyaa to OLF by election, as OLF had strong hold and many millions of supporters in Oromiya. The victory of OLF in oromiyaa would mean independent oromiyaa. This would without doubt prove the session of Oromiya from Ethiopia, and the end of the Ethiopian Empire that was created by the Abyssinian leaders who conquered independent southern states by force. The crimes that EPRDF committed against the OLF and the Oromos reached its height in 1992 regional and local election campaign

With this regard, they decided to stand on OLF’s way and make OLF leaders boycott the election. The EPRDF leaders had no desire to make the election to be free, fair and democratic because free election would help OLF win in Oromiyaa. They were so frightened by the acceptance of OLF by the Oromo people, the largest nation (the Oromo constitutes 35 percent of Ethiopian population) in Ethiopia. During the election period, OLF had mobilized the Oromos to stand up together for their freedom and right. The Oromos who had been waiting for hundred years for such occasion to come rallied behind OLF. This was bad news for the EPRDF and its affiliate organizations. So as to stop this situation, they had to work hard to win over the Oromos by blaming OLF for killing innocent people including the Oromos. This was purposely engineered to blacken the image of the OLF among the Oromos and the international community. However, the reality was that they were the ones who killed thousands of Oromos who supported OLF.

The crimes that EPRDF committed against the OLF and its supporters reached its height in  in June 1992 as OLF was making  regional and local election campaign in Oromiya. When things got worse, OLF decided to withdraw from the Transitional Government (two weeks remaining to the regional election) and engage in military action against EPRDF.

EBC, IRREECHAA DESERVES LIVE COVERAGE!

The Oromos are going to celeberate IRREECHAA (Thanks Giving Day) this weekend on Sunday, October 4/2015 @ Hora Arsedi in Bishoftu City. Irreechaa is the biggest religious event whereby millions of Oromos across the country gather at one place, Hora Arsedi, and praise their WAAQAA that helped them pass from the rainy and dark Ganna Season to Birra, a season that is bright, shiny and full of hopes. The number of Oromos attending this festival has been increasing from year to year. This year alone, more than three million people are expected to be part of this event and this makes IRREECHAA the biggest festival on earth.
However, it has not been promoted so well to make it catch the attention of the world. In this respect, a lot remains to be done. First, the media in the country have to report about it in length giving details as much as they cover and report about other religious and social events in Ethiopia, Africa and other parts of the world. The media, particularly, the broadcast media, in the country has given a very little attention to IRREECHA celebrations. The biggest state broadcaster, EBC, that presents live transmission of Meskel annually and recently did the same for Chambalala, but have made no efforts to do the same for IRREECHAA. What they always do is 20 minutes report during EHUD MEZNAGNA. After that they never mention of IRREECHAA what so ever. What is wrong with ETV when it comes reporting and giving live coverage to IRREECHAA celebrations? The event is taking place in Bishoftu, Ethiopia, not in Mombassa, Kenya. No one understands why the ETV knowingly ignore, an event attended by millions of Oromos and tens of thousands of tourists.
IRREECHA is a religious practice, but in recent days its meaning is not only confined to religion, and it goes beyond that. Oromos from all walks of life , young and old, Christians and muslims, men and women, the Borena and the Barentu, the poor and the rich, the urbanites and the rural residents attend IRREECHAA with one spirit. Nowadays, IRREECHA serves as a platform for the Oromos to connect, share experiences and display their culture to the world. It has now become a forum where Oromos express themselves …their oneness…their unity.
Last year(September, 2014), TVO tried to give a live coverage for the event, however, the live transmission was stopped in the middle as the Aba Geda of Tullama, Bayana Sanbatoo was addressing the mass. It was really disappointing for those who were following the festival at home on TV.

Irreecha 1 Irrecha 2 Irreecha 3This year, we expect EBC will give alive coverage to IRREECHAA , but if they do not do that it means that they have a real problem with IRREECHAA and of course with the Oromo people.

QUBEE LIBERATED AFAN OROMO FROM A CENTURY OLD DOMINATION

The Habesha elites always reiterate that the adoption of the Latin alphabet as ‘Qubee’ Afaan Oromoo has led to the demise of ‘emiye’ Ethiopia. However, the introduction of Qubee Afaan Oromoo has allowed the Oromos to study in their own language and as a result millions of Oromos have now access to education which they have been denied for more than a century. (Habesha is a term that refers to people from the northern part of Ethiopia (mainly Amhara and Tigre) who dominated the socio-poltical structure of Ethiopia since 1900.)

The Habesha elites fear that if Oromos gets education, they will challenge and resist the dominance of Habeshas that lasted for more than a century. In fact, the awareness of the Oromo people about their identity has increased since they started learning in their own language. It is true that language carries history, culture, faith and values of a society. As a result when one studies in his/her language, he/she will definitely learn his/her history, culture, faith and societal values. Now, Oromo youths are studying in their language and this has helped them to learn about their history, customs, belief and values.

Now millions of Oromo children are studying in schools in Afaan Oromoo that uses the Latin alphabet (Qubee). Afaan Oromoo until very recently was not a written language. After the downfall of the Derg (the military government that ruled Ethiopia from 1974-1991), Qubee that was adopted from the Latin alphabet by the Oromo scholars in the 1970’s was introduced to the Oromos by the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF). The Oromo Liberation Front has been using Qubee Afaan Oromoo since 1970’s.

After the removal of the military government, OLF participated along with EPRDF in the transitional government of Ethiopia (TGE) that was formed in 1992. The Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) of course participated in the transitional government for only eight months.

One of the main contributions OLF made to the Oromoo was the introduction of Qubee Afaan Oromoo to the large Oromoo people who lived in illiteracy for years because they had no alphabet of their own. In late 1980’s OLF taught Qubee to the Oromos who lived in areas such as Wollega where OLF was active. However, in 1991 the end of the Military regime created an ideal condition for OLF to teach Qubee to hundred thousands of Oromos in every corner of Oromiyaa.

Qubee1 Qubee2
Later during its participation in the Transitional Government, OLF leaders and Oromo intelectuals held a conference In Finfinne/Addis Abeba and decided to make Afaan Oromoo the medium of instructions and language of work in Oromia. To make it practical, Ibsa Gutema, the minister of Education for TGE, single handedly took the initiative of publishing millions of books in Qubee and distributed to all elementary schools in Oromiyaa. This decision by OLF and its leaders laid the ground for Qubee Afaan Oromoo for what it is now. The introduction of Qubee was welcomed by the Oromos with joy. In the history of the Oromo, for the first time, Oromo children got the chance to study in their first language. Indeed, the adoption of Latin alphabet transformed the Oromos from oral society to written society.
The introduction of Qubee Afaan Oromoo had a lot of meanings for the Oromos whose language had been oppressed for about a century. One, Qubee completely transformed the Oromo language from mere oral language to written language, and this made millions of Oromo children to study in their own language using an alphabet that best suits their language. Second, it showed the end of hundred years’ domination of the Habeshas over the Oromo and its territory. Third, the introduction of Qubee proved that the Oromo people have educated people who are capable of changing the image of the Oromo people, and invalidated the view that the Habeshas held that the Oromos were uncivilized and could not do anything for themselves. If the Oromo elites were given the chance and the freedom, they would commit themselves to get their people out of poverty and domination by others.

All these happened because the Oromo liberation front (OLF) was determined to liberate the Oromo people and their language from hundred years’ colonial yoke. Undeniably, OLF successfully liberated Oromo language though it failed to materialize its main agenda, liberating the Oromo people, and the Oromo land, Oromia.

By the time OLF cadres were teaching Qubee Afaan Oromo, OPDO that now uses Afaan Oromo as a work language in Oromia, used to detain those people who learned Qubee. The Oromo Peoples Democratic Organization (OPDO), one of the affiliates of EPRDF, absolutely opposed the activities of OLF in Oromiyaa. At the same time, the acceptance of Qubee by all the Oromos was a sad story for the habashas, in particular, the Amharas because they knew that their alphabet (Ethiopic Script), which they always boasted for creating it thousand years ago, would be abandoned by the Oromos.

The Habeshas opposed the use of Qubee Afaan Oromoo, and tried everything to hinder Qubee Afaan Oromo not to be used as a medium of education and language of work in Oromiyaa. The Habesha elites insisted on using Ethiopic script for the Oromo Language. They said Ethiopia has its own script, and all languages in Ethiopia should adopt this script for writing. The truth is, had the Sabean Script suited the phonetic system of Afaan Oromoo, the Oromo scholars would have easily adopted the Ethiopic script as alphabet of Afaan Oromoo a century ago.

Even the priests of the Orthodox Church opposed Qubee because they said it was ‘satanic’ and therefore it should be banished from Ethiopia. Moreover, they said the arch of covenant refused to return to the church until Qubee was banished from Ethiopia. They insisted on banishing Qubee from Ethiopia because they said because God told them so. They said this on one occasion of Epiphany celebration.

Oromoo scholars such as Sheik Bakiri Sapphalo strived to adopt the Ethiopic script for Afaan Oromoo. However, it was found that this script could not represent all phonetic system in Afaan Oromoo. An attempt to use the Ethiopic alphabet for Afaan Oromoo began when Abba Gammachis (also known as Onesmos Nasib, an Oromo who was sold as slave but turned out to be an intelligent scholar after he joined the Swedish mission in Massawa, Eritrea) translated the Holy Bible into Oromoo using the Ethiopic alphabet though he ran into a lot of challenges in using this alphabet. At that time all these developments were not welcomed positively by the Abyssinians because they knew that if the Oromos get education in their own language, their domination of the Oromo would be over.

After the Habeshas conquered the Oromos, and occupied their land Oromia, Afaan Oromo was banned from use on the Oromo Land and was replaced by Amharic, the settler’s language. The Habesha settlers forced the Oromos to abandon their language, and accept Amharic instead. To enforce this, they declared Amharic the national language of the Ethiopian Empire. The decree did not, however, stop the Oromos from using their language in their localities. The Oromo in those days had to hire someone to translate their ideas from Afaan Oromo to Amharic (those who used to translate Afaan Oromo into Amharic were called ‘astorgamii’ (Amharic), ‘tirjumana’ (Oromo)) in courts. An Oromo who could not speak Amharic as fluently as the Habeshas would be named ‘tebtaba’ (one whose tongue is tied).

The Habeshas always thought that Oromo language was inferior to their language. They always held the view that not only their language but also their culture and values are superior to that of other nations in Ethiopia. Because of the hate they have for Afaan Oromoo, they would say ‘kuankuachu wanz ayashagirim’, literally translated into English it means ‘your language does not help one to cross a river’. Amharic, which they always boasted about, is barely a language of science and technology. In high schools, colleges and universities, Amharic is not used as a medium of instruction. Researchers use English not Amharic (the language that is praised as the most advanced language in Ethiopia). These instances clearly explain that Amharic language by itself is not ‘a language that helps one to cross a river’.

Amazingly, Afaan Oromoo that was scolded by the Habeshas as a language that doesn’t help one to cross a river is now helping many Oromos to cross many rivers to get into neighboring countries. Oromo language is spoken in North Kenya (considerable number of Borana Oromos live in north Kenya bordering Ethiopia), Somalia and Sudan.

In schools, when Oromo students failed to speak Amharic, the teachers (even Oromo teachers) punish them by beating them with sticks. I experienced this when I was in primary school. By this time, we learned every subject in Amharic. My first language was Afaan Oromo, and I knew no Amharic words when my grandmother enlisted me at the nearby primary school. One day my Amharic teacher (he was Oromo himself) took me out to the front of the class to read Amharic alphabets posted on the class wall. He gave me a stick with which I had to show the letters as I was counting the letters. I directed the stick to the first letter of Amharic alphabet. But I was dumb silent; I could not say the letter. It was simple to guess what the teacher did to me. He beat me harshly and expelled me from the class. I was not the only Oromo student to experience such anguish but also other Oromo students who failed to recite the Amharic alphabet. Of course, this situation lasted until 1991, the year the Military government of Ethiopia was removed by EPRDF and other forces such as the OLF.

Oromo language was not a written language until 1970’s. Many attempts had been made by Oromo scholars such as Sheik Bakiri Sapphalo to create phonetic transcription that represents Afaan Oromoo. Some Oromo scholars (e.g. Bakiri Sapphalo) tried to use Saba script (script used by Amharic, Tigrigna, Ge’eez and other sematic languages in Ethiopia).Some documents have been produced in Afaan Oromo using the Sabean script. For example, Onesmos Nasib used the Sabean script to translate the Holy Bible into Afaan Oromo in 1889 in Massawa, Eritrea. Onesmos and his friend, Aster Ganno wrote poems and praise songs in Oromo language using sabean script. This was possible because these Oromo scholars lived outside Ethiopia at that time.
However, in Ethiopia any attempt made by the Oromos to use even sabean script for writing had been considered unacceptable and illegal. The Habesha kings wanted the Oromos to continue living in illiteracy and poverty forever so that they could rule over them unchallenged. By the way, the Sabean script was not a perfect one for Oromo language for writing. The Oromo scholars such as Sheik Bakiri Sapphalo, Dr Haile Fida and Sheik Mohammed Reshad spent their life time advancing the study of Afaan Oromo. Young Oromo intellectuals such as Abdulsamed Mohammed, Askale Lemma, Tilahun Gemta (PHD) and Mahadi Hamid Mude have made invaluable contributions to the doption of Qubee for Afan Oromo as it was proved through researches that it would fit the Afaan Oromo for writing effectively and efficiently.

The Oromo scholars of the time also proved in their research that Sabean script is unfit for Afaan Oromoo as it can’t represent each phonetic system in Oromo. This is the main reason why the Oromo scholars adopted Latin alphabet for Afaan Oromo. It was not because the Oromo intellectuals hated the Ethiopic script. The reason is purely linguistic. The adoption of Latin alphabet as alphabet for Afaan Oromoo has nothing to do with hatred for the Sabean script as some Habesha elites would like to explicate.

Haacaaluu Hundessaa:The Rising Super Star

Yeroo ammaa kanatti wallistoota Oromoo jaalaala fi kabaja guddaa uummata Oromoorra argatan keessaa tokko Haacaaluu Hundeessaati. Walaloon inni sirbootasaa keessatti fayyadamu kan ajaa’ibaati. Yeedalloon isaa adda. Kanaaf, sirboonni Haacaaluu baay’ee nama hawwatu; gurra namaatti baay’ee mi’aawu. Ergaan isaanii guddoo cimaadha. Nama onnachiisu; rakkina uummata keenyaa ifatti baasu. Bareedina Oromoo fi Oromiyaa faarsu. Oromoon akka tokkoomu gorsu.

Haacaaluun sagalee miidhagaa fi adda ta’e rabbi isa badhaaseera. Yeroo sirbu bareechee, mararsiifatee, lubbuu itti horee sirba. Sirboonni isaa hundi kan jaalalan dhaggeeffatamani dha. Kan gatamu tokkollee hin qaban. Waan kana ta’eef, yeroo gabaaba keessatti Oromoota hunda biratti fudhatama guddaa argate jira. Oromoo ta’ee kan Haacaaluu hindinqisiifannee ykn hin jaalanne arguun nama rakkisa. Naamoonni amantiin keenya sirba dhaggeffachuu nudhorka jedhannillee, yerootti isaan sirba Haacaaluu dhageeffatan ni jira. “Kan sirbu Haacaaluu taanaan, waaqayyo gooftaan hin mufatu,” jedhanii kan yaadan fakkaata.

Anii fi maatiinkoo, Haacaaluu baay’e dinqisiifanna, baay’ee jaalannas. Keesumaa, mucaan keenyi, Naabeek, sirboota Haacaaluu akka malee jaalata. Yeroo daa’ima xiqqaa ture, yoo sirbaa Haacaaluu dhaggeefate malee hirbni isa hifudhatu ture. Sirbi Haacaaluu yoo banamuufii baatee, boo’ee hin dhiisu. Waa’ee Haacaaluu afaansaa mi’aayaa sanaan haasa’ee hin quufu. Moobaayila kiyyarraa ykn kan harmeesaarraa, sirba Haacaaluu banatee dhaggeefachaa oola.

Namoota mana keenya dhufan maratti waa’ee Haacaaluu odeessa. “Haacaaluun Ameerikaa jira; Hacaaluun xiyaara qaba; Haacaaluutiin baay’een jaaladha; Haacaaluun mana keenya dhufee nudubbisa,” jedha. Namoonni taphaaf jedhanii gaafa isaan, “Haacaaluu hin jaalannu,” jedhan ni booya. Waa’ee Haacaaluu hamaa dhaga’uu hin barbaadu. Egaa, daa’immanillee Haacaaluu haga kana jaalatu. Ani fi haati warraakoo, Haacaaluu, waltajjii adda addarratti yeroon inni wallisu qaamaan argineera; waltajjiitti olbaanees isa wajjin shubbisneerra(bara 2010 Finfinnee galama Puushkiinitti akkasumas Adaamaa, Galma Abbaa Gadaatti).

Amma garuu Naabeek akka qaamaan isa argu barbaadna. Hammasitti, sirboota Haacaaluun yeroo adda addaatti baase dhaggeefachaa ittiin bashannanna.