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Published On: Mon, Apr 28th, 2014

Ethiopia: OPDO pleased with Oromo student protests

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By Staff

Mrs Aster Mamo, the Deputy Chairwoman  of the regional ruling party Oromo Peoples Democratic Organization (OPDO) said her party is pleased with the Oromo student protests happening in universities throughout Oromia. This week, thousands of Oromo students have demonstrated in several universities to express their concerns about the government’s investment plan around the capital Addis Ababa.

“Our party is pleased with the Oromo public activism and student participation,” Mamo told local media. “So far the protests have been mostly peaceful but we urge our young citizens to be cautious of anti-peace elements who might try to exploit them” she warned.

Last month, Mamo was appointed as Good Governance & Reform Coordinator. She said the successful Oromo student protests showed that democracy and freedom of expression is improving in Ethiopia. Prime Minister Desalegn Hailemariam recently appointed Aster Mamo as deputy Prime minister, becoming the first Ethiopian woman in history to hold the deputy PM position.

“OPDO is proud to have increased the number of small colleges and universities in Oromia by 400 % over the last 10 years but it is useless unless we create jobs for our new graduates” she claimed.

Mamo said the development plans surrounding Addis Ababa are meant to create more jobs and gain capital and industrial know-how from foreign corporations and investors. “Numerous public discussion forums” were held to involve the community and towns affected, she added. Mamo said the development projects and industrial zones will not affect Oromo farmers and the few hundred Ethiopians relocated will be properly compensated. She also advised people to avoid ethnic politicization of the projects, disclosing that not only in Oromia but all cities in Ethiopia are expanding with urbanization as well as redevelopment programs relocating the innercity residents of Kasanchis and Kirkos.

The OPDO ruling party official also revealed that several opposition parties have already begun campaigning for the 2015 national election thru out the country. She said the government is pleased with the discipline and professionalism displayed by local and state police “in the face of agitation by some protesters.”

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=Y1arLISPUMs

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  1. Gadaa Democracy says:

    Both aster and muktar are so much corrupted and ‘dogs’ for TPLF. We dont expect much from them. We expect a lot from middle ranking OPDO officials.

    Plus this is an issue of all Oromos. No single woman can decide about it. Sit and see.

    • FINFINEGODINA ADDA says:

      KADHADHUU NYAADHU LAMMII GURGURTEE HIN NYAATIN DAFII BAKKA DHUFTETTI DEEBI’I ATI OROMOO MITI (MAN WITHOUT MIND LIKE BIRD WIHOUT WING GOWWAA)

      • Gadaa Democracy says:

        Mall jechu keeti? Ati Aster futeettaa? Niiti keeti? Asterfi Muktaar dhuguma yoo Oromoodhaaf quqaman ‘master planii’ kana fashalessani ykn ofiif akka ummataaf toolutti qoophessu qabu.

  2. tiger says:

    this is just nonsense urbanization is nothing to do with destroying ingenious nation for new settlers from TIgray & somewhere else, no one trust the minority regime and their crack puppet , they want destroy kush nation like Oromo,sidama.Afar and Somali from their God given land >>>

  3. tiger says:

    Let’s not sell or lease, but make our farmers land part of an investment capital in any business!!!

    For an Ethiopian farmer, his land is his birthplace and birthrights. It
    is his only inheritance that passed to him from his forefathers from
    generation to generation for thousands of years. It is his only capital
    and livelihood. It is the only resource
    and wealth that he knows how to manage. Measuring wealth in paper money
    and security derivatives are alien to him. His land is his only secure
    foundation to sustain his family. He has no existence outside his land.
    His land is his country. His land is his home. His land is his
    birthplace, the birthplace of his children, and the resting place of the
    graves of his forefathers. His land is his history, his memory, his
    culture, his language, his literature, and his security in life. His
    land for our farmer is his whole existence and meaning in life.

    Our people received this invaluable gift, a beautiful country and a
    beautiful land, from God for free. But as God commanded them at
    creation, they maintained and kept it for generations passing it to our
    generation. They got it for free from God, but they kept and maintained
    it at high price. Our forefathers defended it by their blood and
    maintained it by their sweat for thousands of years. They defended it
    from colonial powers in the 19th and 20th century. History and world
    will not forget the heroic deeds of our forefathers at the Battle of
    Adawa. Who forgets our patriots such as Ras Abebe Argai Becheree, Balcha
    Aba Nafso, Belay Zeleke, Abdisaa Aga, Kebede Bezunish, Alula and many
    more who defend this land and this country? Who forgets the blood of the
    students of the 1960s who died to take back this land from deviant
    domestic land-grabbers who made our people serfdom for 60 years under
    Emperors Menelik and Hailesellassie?

    Now in our generation, our
    farmers land again is up for grab by unscrupulous international
    land-grabbers and shortsighted domestic speculators. The code word is
    development and globalization. How are we going to deal with it? Should
    we just follow closed door policy by shutting our doors to global and
    domestic capital? Should we just ask our government to defend us at any
    cost? Can we overcome the global forces aligned against us by following
    these policies? How are we going to defend and protect our farmers from
    the global surplus capital and domestic land traders? It requires
    national soul searching and making sound policy decision that secures a
    place and economic space for our people and our country in the world. It
    is not the responsibility we could just leave to our government. Coming
    up with a better policy choices is the responsibility of us all. But
    the government bears the primary responsibility in making the right
    policy decisions.

    Land policy is not like short-term fiscal
    policy. It is not like crafting five years development plan. It is a
    decision on birthrights and birthplace of our people. It is a national
    question connected with our own survival as a nation, our language, our
    culture, our history, and our future as a people. People who lost their
    land in the past lost all this. Historical evidences abound for easy of
    reference on this matter. Just look at how the indigenous people of
    North America, South America, and Australia lost everything once they
    lost their land. Close home, it took a century of struggle for the
    people of South Africa to get back their country. It took more than two
    millennium for Jewish people to find a place called home. I don’t think
    any Ethiopian desires similar fates for our people.

    It is also
    ungodly and against God’s will to sell ones birthplace and birthrights.
    There is a classic story in the Bible on the selling of one’s
    birthrights. It is Esau’s sell of his birthrights for a meal of lentil
    stew in Genesis 25:29–34. The story connotes shortsightedness and
    misplaced priorities of a man who lost his birthright by failing to
    overcome temporary inconvenience. A great body of literature and wisdom
    was built around this classic story to teach children and even grown up
    men not to fall for a lentil of stew. The advice is simple and straight
    forward. Don’t sell your birthrights for something that is “immediately
    attractive but of little value taken foolishly and carelessly in
    exchange for something more distant and perhaps less tangible but
    immensely more valuable.”

    Just think of the abhorrent situation
    of innocent Oromo farmers around Addis Ababa who over the last ten
    years through unconscionable practice of deception and tricks made to
    sign on legal document that deprive them of their ancestral land forever
    by giving them a paper money that will not buy them one lentil stew at
    Sheraton Addis. What better policy options could we offer these farmers
    and others who are soon to be like them under the “new integrated master
    plan”?

    Let’s say we all agree to develop our country and our
    people, and take them out of poverty. Let’s also say we all agree not to
    sell the birthplace and birthrights of our people to feed them today if
    we are given a better choices. Then the question is what policy options
    do we have to survive in this globalized economy and pull us out of
    poverty?

    By all account our only two national resources are our
    people and our land. Then, how could we maximize our share in the
    globalized economy with what we have? As any business person will tell
    you, land is the corner stone of any economy and the most important
    fixed capital whose value continuously increases in any business
    setting. Remember, the reason most East Asian, Arabs and Western
    capitalists come to our country to buy our land today is that they know
    the value our land as the world population hits 10 billion in few years
    and global food supply skyrockets.

    Let’s say we need the
    capital and business skills of these capitalists for our development.
    Let them come with their paper money and skills. We have our land and
    our people. Let’s do business with them. To supply them skilled labor,
    let’s invest in our people educationally and in other areas until we
    become investors ourselves.

    As for our land, let’s not lease or
    sell to them: Let’s make our land part of the investment capital for
    our farmers in those businesses. That will make our farmers shareholders
    of any business that will be invested on his land with the title and
    ownership to his land legally secured and permanently protected.

    If the development agenda underway at the behest of the World Bank and
    IMF are to benefit our people, let’s make the asset of our people, their
    land, part of the investment capital and make our farmers shareholders
    and stakeholders of these businesses.

    Let’s stop selling or
    leasing the birthplace and birthrights of our people at a price far less
    than a lentil of stew or mess pottage. Let the Ethiopian government and
    regional governments like the Oromia National Regional State
    immediately enact policies and laws that will make our farmers
    shareholders and owners of any business to be invested on their land
    with their title to their ancestral land permanently protected and
    secured including their succession rights. Let the hereditary rist
    system customary in our country be protected by law and policy, and
    refuse to sell the birthplace and birthrights of our people

  4. John says:

    This is impressive how ethiopia democracy is progressing well

    Everybody should give credit to the government because in other poor countries, we see many thousand protesters killed in streets

    • tiger says:

      @John:disqus

      what impressive are you talking abt ?? so you saying young student has to massacred on the street , you are just blind ruling minority party sympathizer , you supposed to say no to injustice shame on you , dont think africa like animal

      • Ethiopian says:

        Actually they are right because even in egypt many thousand protestors were killed and many thousand in jail

        Not only the oromo students, but the muslim protests in addiss ababa show that ethiopia democracy is really improving

    • tiger says:

      @John:disqus
      what impressive are you talking abt ?? so you saying young student who oppose displacement and distraction of their community has
      to massacred on the street by regime , you are just blind ruling minority party
      sympathizer , you supposed to say no to injustice shame on you , dont
      think like animal

  5. asmamaw says:

    It is incumbent on the intolerant ethnic warmongers to accommodate the right of other people to live on their ancestral land.

    • Teddy says:

      What is interesting is that no ethnic group is majority in addis ababa or most of shewa area.
      Addis ababa is not really dominated by amara because Mixed ethiopians are majority in the city. Addis ababa is basically melting pot of all ethnic groups, literally. OPDO should change oromia capital from addis ababa to adama because there is no one ethnic group that can ever rule addis ababa.

      Secondly, when menelik’s wife discovered addis ababa, there were no oromos, nobody. Finfinne actually relates to the southeastern tip of addis ababa, not the real addis ababa. Both amaras and oromos lived in shewa for centuries. That is why the amara menelik even spoke oromo language

  6. Bilisuma says:

    why killing young oromo university students, where is democracy

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