Ethiopia: Analysing the political crisis in Jijiga


somali region flagBy Chris Brown

JIGJJIGA – the general atmosphere in Jijiga, Somali Regional State, appears to be normal while still, however, no solution has been reached to the biggest ever dispute within the ruling party in Somali regional state. But it the instability can be discerned in the day-to-day activities of public services has halted in bureau and agencies.

In latest effort to silence the opposition to his authority, Abdi Omar announced a shake up his cabinet, but his former colleagues did not give any hoot to his reshuffle, all his action falling into deaf-ear. Abdi Mohamed Omar even used websites he personally finance, such xogtashacabka, to ridicules some of die-hard rivals. As an independent writer it would be impossible to write his gutter slur on this blog.

Reports reaching us from Addis Ababa indicate that some of the regional ruling party members have arrived in Addis Ababa to shore up their support and submit their protestation to the federal government against the president. It remains uncertain whether the central government acknowledges the group seven’s petition to oust the late strong man, Abdi Mohamed Omar. But the Federal government knows their presence in the capital.

The position of Federal Government and EPRDF

It is not known what action the Federal Government or EPRDF will take against the infighting that shadowed one Ethiopian regional state that constitutes Federal Government. However, reliable sources have told us that the EPRDF has already held a meeting regarding the dispute that on-going in Somali Regional State and they have expressed their concern about the current impasse and division. This meeting took place side by side with the current EPRDF biannual meeting just concluded in Addis Ababa. It is worthwhile to note here that no single official from Somali regional state has taken part in the biannual meeting of EPRDF.

The EPRDF biannual conference was closed yesterday and the last meeting of the executive committee delayed a delegation to be sent to Jijiga to investigate the dispute and recommend course of action to stabilise the regional state. It is also believed that the New Year celebration in Ethiopia could drag the expected arrival of delegation from the EPRDF heavy weight to Jijiga.


The question at this juncture everyone is asking is who will come victorious at the end the day

It is difficult to predict the exact turn of the situation in Somali regional state. But it is believed that the political struggle in the regional state has reached its final leg, in short time it would be possible to know the group that has the upper hand.

Abdi Omar, the brutal dictator ever held office in the regional state is throwing his luck in persuading his rivalries to come to term with him or finish them one by one. On the other hand, the seven strong members of those who opposed his administration and who survived until now are trying their best to oust him. The latter group is eager that a general meeting of the regional executive committee reconvened as soon as possible and they have not left any stone unturned in the regional state to unseat the president from his power. At the end of the day, one group will come out as the winner; however, it is not yet known which group will upheld the upper hand. There is no doubt that these two groups have reached a point of irreconcilable and again to work together due to the hostility they have already damaged each other using mass-media and unscrupulous comments.

It is believed that the strong man in the regional state in the last four years has lost his leverage with the Federal Government. Had he had a power, this situation would not have developed to this stage. The EPRDF delegation must make a decision to the best interest of the Somali Regional State people. The status quo in Somali regional state must be shifted now. We need stability for development to take root in this regional state. It is almost twenty years since change comes in Somali regional state.

For the last more than two decades, we have seen domination of one clan in both officials in the regional government and those who have openly taken weapon to fight the regional state and the Federal Government. Somali Regional state of Ethiopia has to learn from the Southern People’s Regional State where the regional state nation/nationalities and clans directly participate in the regional state. That is what we need in Somali regional state. I am proposing for the EPRDF delegation to create two block solutions for Somali regional state: Ogadeni and other Somali division, just like you sort out good apples from the bad one. This will first shift the grass plate from the ONLF supporters. Second it will give ample opportunity for other Somalis people to develop their respective areas which finally will win the heart and mind of peace loving Ogadeni to replicate similar development. It may send strong message to those Ogadeni who have taken up arms to fight the democratic process. If we don’t follow this approach, I think the vicious cycles of destruction in Somali regional state will continue an unabated for centuries to come rendering as poor and underdeveloped which is the fertile ground for the growing of extremist organisations.



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