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Humanity before Ethnicity

The EPRDF Shudders at Truth

December 30, 2008

We in the Solidarity Movement for a New Ethiopia (SMNE) condemn the recent imprisonment of Ms. Bertukan Mideksa, the chairwoman of the Coalition for Unity and Democracy Party (CUDP), the beating of Professor Mesfin and the intimidation of the UDJP opposition party or any other political party seeking its legitimate constitutional right to freely operate within Ethiopia.

We condemn the imprisonment of Teddy Afro on trumped up charges, the imprisonment of Oromo and Ogadeni dissidents and the continued harassment of many other courageous Ethiopians who suffer only because they desire a free and just society built on a foundation of truth rather than on the lies, deception and propaganda of this repressive regime.

The EPRDF has once again shown how easily offended they are when the light of truth “publicly exposes” their dark deeds through the moral courage of Ethiopians who stand up against it.

The simple power of truth can shaken fortresses of oppression whose strength depends on lies, deception, propaganda and cover-up.

No wonder the Meles regime over-reacted when Bertukan Mideksa refused to recant her statement recently made in Sweden about the terms of her release.

Despite threats, she refused to accept responsibility for the false grounds of her and other CUDP leaders’ imprisonment following the flawed Ethiopian National Election of 2005 and the Meles government’s killing of 193 election protestors. Everyone already knows that any apology on her part would only be part of a continued “cover-up” by this regime, but she broke a regime rule which demanded that she “openly pretend” that the government was in the right, if she wanted to remain free.

If she would have only agreed not to challenge EPRDF propaganda, she and her newly formed UDJP, would be allowed to “operate” within the country as an “example” of political freedom. Yet, what kind of opposition party is possible if it can only operate as a puppet of the EPRDF? It would only help enhance a false image of the EPRDF in the international community. Instead, Bertukan refused and now she is in prison.

The Meles regime counts on using fear and intimidation to suppress the truth; however, what they most fear is the moral courage of the people to stand up for what they believe regardless of their threats.

How many Ethiopians are dead, beaten or in prison for upholding God-given principles in defiance to a system that punishes its people for standing up against lies and injustice?

The Meles government has become like a mafia-style gang of thugs. Instead of feeding, educating and protecting the people, they are killing the country while draining its resources. People, one by one, are being hurt. When one Ethiopian is wounded, let us all feel the pain and stand up in their defense.

In the old Ethiopia, when someone was imprisoned, killed or persecuted from outside our own political group, ethnic group, region or religion, we turned away because they were not considered to be “part of us” or “part of our group.” This is the Ethiopia that is killing us. No more!

It is also time for Ethiopians in the Diaspora to stop complaining, accusing and attacking regarding the division of the Kinijit. It is time to put aside the old and come forward believing in the principles of humanity before ethnicity and that no one is free until we all are free. Despite Meles’ intimidation and arrests, he will not stop us if we come together to uphold truth, morality and the value of each member of our society.

All of us must stand up against the arrest of Bertukan who took a brave stand for truth, the arrest of Teddy Afro whose strong and soothing songs have brought tears of joy in a land where most tears are tears of pain and misery, the arrests of our Oromo brothers and sisters who were unjustly rounded up only a few weeks ago, the attacks against the Ogadeni who are severely suffering in our southeastern region and the continued imprisonment of many thousands of Ethiopian prisoners of conscience from the east to the west from the north to the south. Until all of these people are free, we will not be free!

We know that Meles is bringing death to Ethiopia, but we should know that the killers are few and that we, the revivers, are many. May our God help us to rise up and to stand, side by side, as humans first, and as Ethiopians second. Let us trust in God for his help as we come together in action.

Let us also pray for the protection and strengthening of those like Bertukan who have defied the darkness with the light of truth. As we Ethiopians stand up together in solidarity with one voice we can show that we are ready to free our country and to create a government of the people.

This is a message we can take to the world! Never lose hope for with God, all things are possible! He is the protector and advocate of those who come in humility! He is more powerful than the guns, the greed and the immoral system that breeds hatred in Ethiopia!

May God bless Ethiopia!


Please do not hesitate to email me if you have comments to: Obang@solidaritymovement.org
Obang Metho, Executive Member of the Solidarity Movement for a New Ethiopia

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