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Tuesday, December 31, 2013

በሃዋሳ ዩኒቨርሲቲ ዋና ግቢ ኣንድ ህንጻ በእሳት ተያይዟል። እንደ ኣይን እማኖች ገለጻ ከሆነ ከህንጻው የምንቀለቀለው እሳት በኪሎ ሜትሮች ርቀት ላይ ይታያል።
እስከ ኣሁን ባለን መረጃ መሰረት የህንጻው የላይኛው ፎቆች በእሳት ቃጠሎው የወደሙ ሲሆን በሰው ነፍስ ላይ የደረሰው ጉዳት ግን ኣለመኖሩን ያልተረጋገጡ መረጃዎች ያሳያሉ። በእሳት ቃጠሎው የወደመውን ህብረትን በተመለከተ የዩኒቨርሲቲው ኣስተዳደር በቅርቡ መረጃ ይሰጣል ተብሎ  ይጠበቃል።
ዝርዝር መረጃው እንደደረሰን እናቀርባለን

Monday, December 30, 2013

Debub Global Makes False Start in Banking Journey

 

Although it is common for newcomers to struggle in the first year, the 14.3 million Br loss is excessive

From left to right Nuredin Awol, Board chairperson of Debub Global Bank, Worku Lemma, president, Melaku W. Mariam and Haile Hamaro, Board members, during the annual general assembly held at the Millennium Hall.

 

Debub Global Bank, which joined the banking industry as the 15th private bank in August 2012, incurred significant losses compared to other newcomers, during its first 11 months of operations.
The annual audited report released during the second annual general shareholders meeting, held on December 21, 2013, at the Millennium Hall, disclosed that the Bank has finished the year by reporting a loss of 14.3 millionBr.Even though making a loss is common for newcomers to the industry, the amount reported at Debub Global is huge.
Debub has earned a total income of 14.8 million Br, while spending 29.1 million Br in interest and staff and general administration expenses. Out of the total expenses, 16.8 million Br has been spent on general administration. This must have been due to an aggressive move to enter the industry.
Debub has total assets of 380.6 millionBr.It has disbursed loans and advances of 99.4 million Br and mobilised deposits of 158.4 millionBr.The Bank has achieved a loan to deposits ratio of 62.8pc.
The total assets held by Debub. loan disbursements, deposit mobilisation and loan to deposits ratio is lower than  that of all other newcomers in their first year of operation.
“This must have been due to Debub having entered the industry while it is saturating and the competition becoming fierce,” says Abdulmena Mohammed Hamza, an accounts manager for the Portobello Group Ltd – a London-based holding company with subsidiaries in property investment and development. “The situation indicates that Debub will face a tough time ahead. It needs to come up with strategies to outperform others.”
Debub has invested 27.8 million Br in five year National Bank of Ethiopia (NBE) bonds. This investment represents seven percent of the total assets and 18pc of the total deposits of the Bank.
The young entrant started floating shares in August 2009. After raising around 266 million Br in subscribed capital from 5,481 shareholders, the Bank held its first general assembly on September 19, 2010.
Having previously presented the other documents required, Debub Global submitted its nominees for its board of directors in December 2010.
This move enabled the Bank to escape the NBE’s directive, which raised the minimum paid-up capital requirement from 75 million Br to a whopping 500 millionBr.
The directive issued in September 8, 2011, was a major entry barrier to banks under formation, which were required to come up with the full amount prior to establishment. This was unlike banks that were already in operation, which were given a five-year window to raise the equity.
Liquidity ratio indicates that Debub is a very liquid bank. Its liquid assets to total assets ratio is 40pc and its liquid assets to total deposits stands at 96pc.
Debub has a paid up capital of 127.5 million Br and a capital adequacy ratio of 114pc. The young entrant needs to raise its paid up capital by 58pc a year to comply with the NBE directive that compels private banks to have a paid up capital of Birr 500 million by 2016, according to Abdulmena.
“This reveals that Debub will have a very hard time ahead to raise such amount of capital per year, “he said. “The job will be even harder unless Debub reverses its losses to a reasonable profit.”
Credit and foreign exchange constraints and the current paid-up capital requirements are going to be challenging for those involved in the sector, says Alemayehu Dibaba, a senior banking expert, who has been in the banking sector for several years.
Currently, all banks are also expected to buy Treasury bills with 27pc of every loan disbursement, as of April 2011. This has caused liquidity problems for most banks, leading to a formal complaint from the Bankers Association in June 2011. The Central Bank gave no response, but banks are now looking into new deposit mobilisation schemes.
New banks are best advised to seek revenue from non-credit services, according to the expert. Debub Plans to raise the required paid up capital through the sale of shares.
The Bank plans to raise 700 million Br by 2017, mainly through the selling of shares. But established banks who are also vying for new shareholders will toughen the competition, the expert argues.

 

Sunday, December 29, 2013


እንደምታወቀው ኣብዘኛውን ቁጥር የምይዘው የሲዳማ ህዝብ የምኖረው በገጠር ነው። ሲዳማ ወደ ከተማ መግባት የጀመረው የኢህኣዴግ መግባትን ከተትሎ ነው። በወቅቱ የሲዳማውያን በገዛ ከተሞቻቸው ውስጥ ገብተው መኖር እንዲጀምሩ በምል የዞኑ መንግስት ብዙ እድሎችን በመፍጠር የህዝቡን ወደ ከተማ መግባት እና ወደ ከተሜነት መለወጥን ኣበረታቷል፤ ምንም እንኳን እንደታለመለት ሳይሆን ወደ ሃዋሳ እና ወደሌሎች የሲዳማ ከተሞች የገባው የገጠሩ ህዝብ በመንግስት የተሰጣቸውን መሬት ለሌላ ብሄር ተወላጅ ባለሃብቶች በመሸጥ እጅ ነካሽ ብሆኑም።

ለኣብነት ያህል ከዛሬ ኣስር እና ኣስራም ኣምስት ኣመት ጀምሮ በተለይ በሃዋሳ ከተማ ውስጥ የሲዳማውያን በኢኮኖሚው የበላይነት እንዲኖራቸው ሲባል ለንግድ የምሆኑ ግንባር የሆኑ ቦታዎች በዞኑ መንግስት እና በከተማዋ ኣስተዳደር ለበርካታ ሲዳማውያን የተሰጠ ሲሆን፤ የተሰጣቸው መሬት ላይ የንግድ ቤቶችን በመገንባት የእድሉ ተጠቃሚ ከመሆን ኣብዛኛዎቹ የተሰጣቸውን መሬት ከላይ እንዳነሳሁት ለሌላ ብሄር ተወላጂ ባላሃብቶች በመሸጥ ሌሎቹን ጠቅመዋል ሲጠቅሙም ይታያል። በከተማዋ ግንባር ቀደም የሆኑ ቦታዎች ወይም በኣሁኑ ጊዜ ትላልቅ የንግድ ቤቶች ተሰርቶባቸው ብዙ ገንዝብ በማስገባት ላይ ያሉ ቦታዎች የዛሬ ኣምስት እስከ ኣስር ኣመታት በፊት ባለቤቶቻቸው እኔማናቸው ከተባለ መልሱ መቶበመቶ ሲዳማዎች እንደሆኑ ብዙ ሳይደከም የደረስበታል።

በርግጥ በሃዋሳ ከተማ ውስጥ የሲዳማ ባለሃብት የለም ማለት ኣይደለም። በከተማዋ ውስጥ በመገንባት ላይ ከምገኙ ህንጻዎች ውስጥ በሲዳማ ባላሃብቶ በመገንባት ላይ ያሉ በርካታ ናቸው፤ ነገር ግን እንደከተማዋ ባላቤት ፤ ካለው የኢኮኖሚ ጡንቻ እና የዞኑ እና የከተማ ኣስተዳደር ከፈጠረላቸውም ምቺ የስራ እድል ኣንጻር ኣልተጠቀሙም። እንደ ጥቻ ወራና ዘጋባ ከሆነ ሲዳማውያን በሃዋሳ ከተማ ውስጥ በተለይ በንግድ ስራ ከሌላው ብሄር እኩል ለመስራት ብዙ የልምድ ማነስ ይታይባቸዋል። የተለያዩ የንግድ ስራ ለመስራት ተብሎ በሲዳማውያን የተገነቡ ህንጻዎች ለሌሎች ስዎች በክራይ ተሰጥተው ሌሎች ሰዎች ይነግዱበታል። የዞኑ መንግስት የሲዳማን ወጣቶች በንግድ እና በገንዘብ ኣያያዝ ላይ ግንዛቤ ልፈጥሩ የሚያስሉ ስራዎችን መስራት ካልቻለ ሲዳማውያን በሃዋሳ ከተማ በንግድ ተወዳዳር የመሆን እድል የጠበበ ነው።

በሃዋሳ ከተማው ሲዳማውያን የምሳተፉባቸው የንግድ ስራዎችም የተወሰኑ ይመስላሉ ለኣብነት ያህል፤በገዛ ከተማቸው ከሌላው እኩል ባላቸው ሃብት ተጠቃሚ ልያደርጋቸው የምችል ስራዎችን መስራት ሲችሉ የምሰሩት ግን በኣብዛኛው ከቡና ንግድ ጋር የተያያዘ ስራ ብቻ ነው። እንደምታወቀው በኢኮኖሚው ዘርፍ ዘርፌ ብዙ የሆነ መሰረት ያለው ኢኮኖሚ መገንባት ካልተቻለ በቡና ብቻ የተሞለኮዝ ኢኮኖሚ ዘንድሮ እንዳየነው ኣይነት የቡና ዋና መውረድ ሲገጥመው ወደ ቀውስ መግባቱ ኣይቀረ ነው። ለዚህም ሲዳማውያን የኢኮኖሚ መሰረታቸውን በበርካታ የኢኮኖሚ ዘርፎች ላይ መጣል የግድ ይላቸዋል።

እንደ ጥቻ ወራና ኣባባል ከሆነ በሃዋሳ ከተማው ውስጥ የሆቴል፤ሬስቷራንት፤ካፌ፤ ሱፐርማርኬት እና የመሳሰሉት የንግድ ስራዎች ሲዳማዎች የማይሳተፉባቸው ከመሆናቸው የተነሳ ለሌላው ብሄር ብቻ የተተው እስኪመሰል ደርሰዋል። ይህንን ማለት ሃዋሳን በሚያክል በካፊቴርያ ቤቶች ብዛት በምታወቅ ከተማ ውስጥ በሲዳማውያን ባሌበትነት የምተዳደር እንደነ ሎግታ ካፌን ኣይነቶቹን የተወሰኑ ካፌዎች ማየት የምገርም ነው ማለታች ነው።

ለማንኛውን በመላው ኢትዮጵያ፦በትግራይ፤ ኣማራ፤ ኦሮሚያ እና በሌሎች መሰል ኣካባቢዎች ያሉ የየኣካባቢው መንግስታት ለህዝቦቻቸው እንደምያደርጉት ሁሉ የሲዳማ ዞን መንግስት በሃዋሳ ከተማ ውስጥ ያለውን የሲዳማውያንን የኢኮኖሚ እንቅስቃሴ በመቃኘት በንግድ እና በሌሎች ገቢ ማስገኛ ዘርፎች ላይ የተሰማሩ ዜጎች ያሉባቸውን ችግሮ በማጥናት ችግሮቹን የመቅረፊ እና በኢኮኖሚ የባላይነት የምጎናጸፉበትን መንገድ ቢያመቻች መልካም ነው።
መልካም ጊዜ!

Saturday, December 28, 2013


2.The Ireland Aid - Sidama Development Programme - An Area Based Integrated Rural Development Approach

2.1 The Development Programme

The Ireland Bilateral Aid Programme for the Sidama province known as the Sidama Development Programme (SDP) was established in May 1994 after a feasibility study conducted by the team of development experts from the Embassy of Ireland in Addis Ababa, led by Mr. Joseph Feeney identified three areas for development assistance in the country. These were (a) Sidama and Gurage provinces in Southern Ethiopia and the Tigray province in Northern Ethiopia. During this period the Ireland aid followed a non-conventional development assistance approach that was based on equal partnership with the local people with funding support provided to projects directly identified as development priorities by the people on the ground.

The Ireland Aid –Sidama Development Programme was an integrated rural development program with interventions in wide range of areas including:

a) Education – building and renovating primary and secondary schools, building libraries and provisions of books, primary school teacher training, etc..

b) Health - building health posts, and clinics, and supply of pure drinking water through spring protection in the highlands and sustainable rain water harvesting in low land districts,

c) Rural roads: construction of labour intensive all weather rural roads with the objective of both creation of employment to hundreds of thousands of redundant rural labour force and expanding access to remote poor rural villages in the province,

d) Provision of electricity to emerging rural towns including the district capital towns,

e) Supply of grinding mills to small rural towns to reduce the burden of women who travel tens of kilometers looking for grinding mill services,

f) Microfinance services: access to rural credit was a critical development challenge in the Sidama province. The programme's second core project was ensuring sustained access by poor rural households primary women to saving and credit facilities.

Ireland Aid's philosophy of the early 1990s was radically different from an age old conventional western aid philosophy. Their development philosophy was guided by the following core principles:

1) Poverty focus: strictly assisting development projects in poorer areas of the region first,

2) Gender sensitivity: strictly ensuring that women have been involved from consultation up to implementation and management of any development project in the area,

3) Community participation: strictly ensuring that the community members have been involved from the initial stage of development problem identification, up to implementation and management of the project. Rapid Rural Appraisals and Participatory Rural Appraisals were part of all major project implementation phases. At the same time, community members had to voluntarily contribute at least 20% of the project cost either through voluntary labour or material supplies to ensure sense of ownership.

4) Sustainability: to ensure sustainability of the development initiatives supported by Ireland Aid, the programme encouraged establishment of rural village development committees known as KDCs as a well as a coordinating development institution at regional level.

2.2 The Development Programme Funding and Implementation Mechanism

On top of the above radical development policy measures, the Ireland Aid made sure that funding to all development projects are managed directly by the stakeholders without any interference from the central government. Funds were directly transferred to the Development Programme account from Ireland Aid and were managed jointly by the staff of Ireland Embassy and officials of the Sidama Development Programme who were accountable both to the donor and the local Sidama government structures. The funds were then transferred directly to the local government structures responsible for the implementation of a given project. This made sure that there were no delays in acquiring inputs required for the implementation of the projects. Financial utilization reports were prepared on monthly basis by the staff of the development programme at the local level and monitored by the staff of the Embassy and by the staff of Department of Foreign Affairs in the donor country.

The programme initially started in two remote and poor districts of Sidama- Bansa and Arbegona on a pilot basis. The pilot programme operated in these districts for one year and was expanded to the rest of the province after the successful completion of the pilot phase.

The projects were implemented in partnership with the local government departments. Health projects were implemented by the Sidama Provincial Health Department while education projects were implemented by the Provincial Education Department and so on.

This ensured the efficient use of the available human resources which would otherwise sit idle due to limited resources and saved massive administrative cost on the Ireland Aid –Sidama Development Programme. This not only created a strong foundation for the sustainability of the future development efforts in the region but also enhanced the local capacity for development.

On top of this, Ireland Aid was 100 percent development grant with no future debt implications for the Sidama region or the country at large and no other strings were attached.

In addition to funding development projects identified as priorities by the poor rural community members, the Ireland Aid provided continued training in upgrading local skills in all government institutions in the area. It also provided awareness education to thousands of local government officials as well as politicians on the importance of participatory approaches in rural development. Hundreds of local government officials and politicians have travelled to other developing countries such as Bangladesh, Philippines and South Africa to share their experiences on rural development. These created a complete sense of ownership of the development activities by the Sidama people and have increased local staff commitment, quality of service delivery, and speed of development project implementation.

During this period, the Ireland Aid followed an innovative approach to tackling the development problem in Africa. First and foremost, Ireland Aid was accountable to the local people for delivery of the services it promised and any future collaboration with the community members were dependent up on the fulfillment of the previous commitments. Second, the Aid programme improved the local government capacity thorough continued training and exposure programmes. Third, direct funding of projects made sure that aid fungibility and corruption at the central government level were eliminated. Corruption at local was checked by the active participation of the community members, continued training and awareness creation that created full sense of programme ownership. Project implementation by the government departments in charge was regularly monitored by the local development programme office and representatives of the donor based in the country.

The Ireland Aid area based development programme in Sidama was therefore a resounding success.

2.3 The Achievements of the Ireland Aid in Sidama – People Centered Aid Can Work In Africa

The Ireland Aid-Sidama development programme between 1994-2002 was a typical case of development Aid success in Africa and a living proof that properly funded, managed and monitored, development aid can work in Africa.

Within less than 8 years of the implementation the development programme achieved the following in Sidama:

A) Primary school participation rate: after about 8 years of Ireland Aid intensive education sector development in Sidama, primary school participation rate increased from about 47% in early 1990s to about 67% in 2002. The programme built over 250 low cost primary schools, built and upgraded over 8 high schools and provided teacher training for over 2000 primary school teachers,

B) Ensured access to savings and credit scheme by over 30, 000 rural households, primarily women to savings and credit scheme and established a sustainable Sidama Microfinance Institution which continued to operate until today, 8 years after the end of Ireland Aid support for the Sidama region,

C) Created jobs for over 500,000 rural unskilled labourers through labour intensive rural road construction connecting several rural districts, the total length of new all weather rural roads built by Ireland Aid was over 700 kms.

D) About 200 low cost rural health posts and 4 large Health Centers were built and supported by the programme while over 4000 high land springs were protected ensuring access to pure water by almost 800,000 rural dwellers.

E) Rural electrification including building a micro hydro electric power for one of the rural district capital town and generator electrification for over 5 rural towns. Rural small businesses expanded rapidly after the electrification of these rural towns.

F) Built an institute of development studies and education, one of the first of its kind in participatory development studies in the country. The center is upgraded to a college level and continues to operate with own sources of income 8 years after suspension of support by Ireland Aid.

G) In addition, the programme established a network village or Kebelle Development Committee (KDCs) which acted as a voice of the rural communities for issues relating to the development of their areas.

All in all, over 2 million Sidama people have benefited from the Ireland Aid Integrated Rural Development Programme in Sidama between 1994-2002 with two key projects continuing to operate 8 years after the discontinuation of the aid funds.

Why was the Ireland Aid in Sidama unique in Africa? There are some key lessons to be learnt here. Ireland Aid followed a radically different aid philosophy in the early 1990s in Ethiopia. First, the bilateral aid funds were channeled directly to the project areas instead of the central government through establishment of local integrated development programmes which were genuine partnership arrangements with the local administration and the community. Second, the locals were not only treated as equal partners but were allowed to take the lead. The Irish did not impose "development" on the Sidama people. Third, the aid funds were purely development grants and no strings were attached to them. And finally a radically different aid philosophy generated radically different local responses: the local government and community members felt complete sense of ownership which ensured commitment to the development programme. The combination of these factors created a unique case of bilateral development aid that made an enormous difference to poverty alleviation in the province.

2.4 The Withdrawal of the Ireland Aid from the Sidama Region

Continued dependence on aid is not desirable. However, an abrupt discontinuation of an aid programme without a clear exit strategy is also a disaster. This was what happened to the Sidama progamme. After about 8 years of funding, the Ireland Aid made a U-turn in its development aid philosophy and decided to unilaterally withdraw the direct funding to the Sidama area based programme.

Pressures from two sources have been mentioned as the forces behind the sudden shift in Ireland's genuine aid philosophy. First, they were seen as anti status quo and anti-conventional aid model among their EU member states which threatend to alienate them diplomatically from their EU partners. And second and equally important, the Ethiopian government did not like the idea of direct funding to the programme areas and openly asked the Ireland government to channel the bilateral funds to the central government treasury as other donors do.

It seemed therefore that being under pressure from the two formidable forces which care less about the development on the ground, the Ireland Aid had no choice but ignore its commitment to the local people and run away from the region. At present, Ireland Aid is one of the key donors to the Ethiopia central government but all development projects commenced by them have been suspended in the Sidama province. Ireland Aid has now become one of Dambisa Moyo's Dead Aid in Africa.

3. Concluding remarks

Development aid channeled to the central government treasuries of the poor African countries has made little difference to poverty alleviation and economic growth during the past 50 years. According to Moyo, it has in fact worsened the economic performance of the recipient African countries as the poverty rates in these countries continue to escalate and growth rates have steadily declined. She underscores that aid has been, and continues to be, an unmitigated political, economic and humanitarian disaster for most parts of the developing world - and Africa in particular.

The main reasons for the failure of the development aid are limited or no role by the local people, corruption, aid fungibility, lack of institutional capabilities, and non altruistic motives by the donors.

However, not all foreign assistances are doomed to fail. A people centered bilateral development aid that involves the local people from project identification through its implementation, operation and management in Africa can make a real difference on the ground. A typical example of bilateral aid that was people centered and that worked in Africa is an Ireland Aid -Sidama Development Programme in Ethiopia. In less than 8 years, this programme led to improvements in primary school participation rates , access to clean water, health facilities, electricity, and credit facilities by millions of the rural poor in the province.

However, this success story was cut short before it could serve as a fully fledged development aid model in Africa due to hostilities from conventional donor model and the central government.

Now that the failure of development aid is widely acknowledged by the international community and there is little or no will to change the conventional aid model to make aid work, the only alternative to the development problems in Africa are to attract more foreign direct investment, regional economic integration with more inter regional trade, removal of agricultural subsidies by the donor countries, improved governance and the rule of law and respect for property rights. Africa must forget about development aid and begin to think!

Reference


  • Esterly, William .2006. The West Can't Save Africa. Locals Must Take the Lead. Washingtonpost.com, February 13, 2006.


  • Edemariam, Aida, 2009. Everyone Knows it does not work. The Guardian , 19 February 2009, www.guardian.co.uk


  • Moyo, Dambisa 2009. Dead Aid- Why Aid Is Not Working And How There Is A Better Way For Africa. New York: Farrar, Straus and Giroux.
  •  

    Friday, December 27, 2013

    በሃዋሳ ከተማ መሃል ፒያሳ ላይ ከሴቶች ጋር በተያያዘ በቅርቡ ኣንድ የውጭ ዜጋ በሞቱን ተከትሎ በከተማዋ የጸጥታ ቁጥጥሩ የተጠናከረ ሲሆን፤ በሙሉ ከተማዋ ፌደራል ፖሊስ በመኪኖች ታግዞ የጸጥታ ቁጥጥር ስራውን በመስራት ላይ ነው።
    በከተማዋ የተሰማራው የጸጥታ ኣስከባር ኃይል የከተማዋን ጸጥታ ማስከበር የቻለ ሲሆን ሪፖርተራችን ጥቻ ወራን ከተማዋን በመቃኘት ያላከልን መረጃ እንዳምያመለክተው የሃዋሳ ከተማ በኣሁኑ ጊዜ ሰላም የሰፈነባት ከተማ ሆናለች።
    የሃዋሳ ከተማ የመዝናኛ ከተማነት ባለፈው የቱርዝም ኮንፎራንስግ ማዕከልም እየሆነች በመምጣት ላይ ያለች ከተማ ስለሆነ በጸጥታ ጉዳይ ላይ የምመለከተው ኣካል መስራት ይጠበቅበታል። በተለይ የጫምባባላ እና የቅዱስ ገብረኤል ንግስና በዓላትን የመሳሰሉ እጅግ በርካታ ሰዎች የምሳተፉበትን በዓላት የምታስተናግድ ከተማ መሆኗ በጸጥታ ጉዳይ ላይ ልዩ ትኩረት እንድሰጥባት የግድ ይላል። በዚህ ሳምንት ላይ የምከበረውን የታህሳሳ የቅዱስ ገብረኤል ንግስና በዓል ላይ ለመገኘት በርካታ ቁጥር ያለው ህዝብ ወደ ከተማዋ የምመጣ በመሆኑ በጸጥታ ኣጠባበቅ ላይ ትኩረት መሰጠት ኣለበት።
    የከተማዋን ሰላም እና ጸጥታ በዘላቂነት ለማስከበር መንግስት ኣሁን እያደረጋ እንዳለው ችግሮች ከተከሰቱ በኃላ ላይ ብቻ የጸጥታ ኃይልን ከማሰማራት ዘላቂ የሆነ ጸጥታ የማስከበር ስራዎችን ብስራ መልካም ነው።
    Call for Boycotting Bedele Brewery

    (Finfinne, December 26, 2013) -- Earlier this month, Ethiopian singer Tewodros Kassahun, better known by his stage name Teddy Afro, told a local newspaper that he considered emperor Minelik’s violent imperial expansion a "holy war." Teddy's glorification of the 19th century monarch, who committed ethnic cleansing against various nations and nationalities in southern Ethiopia, is not new. His last album 'Tikur Sew' was dedicated to the same king. 

    Background:

    Starting in 1880s, Emperor Menelik II embarked on a war of conquest against the Oromo and other nations located south of the Abyssinian kingdom. Equipped with the latest European firearms, his army unleashed a devastating campaign, which according to some reports reduced the population of several ethnic groups including the Oromo by half. Wherever he faced fierce resistance, Menelik responded with the most barbaric and horrific forms of violence sometimes cutting of hands of male adults and breasts of women. Menelik’s soldiers settled on the land they conquered, continuing with their brutality as they expropriated land and turned the indigenous population into serfs. Consequently, in Ethiopia, Menelik’s war of conquest remains the most painful episode in its modern history.
    ታዋቂው ድምፃዊ ቴዎድሮስ ካሳሁን (ቴዲ አፍሮ) “የፍቅር ጉዞ” የተሰኘ  ለአንድ አመት የሚዘልቅ የሙዚቃ ኮንሰርት ለመስራት ከበደሌ ስፔሻል ጋር ሰሞኑን የተፈራረመ ሲሆን ኮንሰርቱ ጥር ሶስት ቀን በድሬዳዋ እንደሚጀመር ተገለፀ፡፡



    In recent years, some political groups and individuals have been engaged in attempt to rebrand Menelik as a national hero brushing off his heinous crimes as the order of the day. Teddy stands at the forefront of that shameful campaign to remake Menelik a saint-like figure. It is therefore with a great deal of shock we learned that Heineken NV's subsidiary in Ethiopia, Bedele Brewery, is sponsoring a nationwide tour to commemorate the centennial of Menelik for this deeply polarizing artist. Located in Oromia where Menelik's campaign was the most ruthless and named after a local town that suffered a great deal under Menelik’s brutal campaign, we were dismayed that Bedele Brewery would endorse and finance such a tour. We understand the vital importance of Bedele Brewery to the local economy. In fact, not least due to its unique Oromo name, there is a strong affinity and a preference for Bedele among Oromo customers.

    Recognizing that the company's local representatives might be unaware of the tour's implication, we, concerned Bedele-Heineken customers, sent an appeal letter dated December 20, 2013 to regional office in Addis Ababa as well as Heineken headquarters . The letter advised Bedele and its parent company Heineken to disassociate themselves from this ostensibly framed but ill-conceived tour. We allowed a reasonable time for the company to respond to our letter but have not heard back in the time specified in our letter. Calls to the regional office in Addis Ababa were not returned. We are forced to launch this public campaign as a protest of Teddy's offensive tour and its sponsors. Unless appropriate public action is taken otherwise, the campaign calls for boycotting of Bedele Beer. We call on the Oromo and other people in Ethiopia who care about historical justice and peaceful coexistence to boycott Bedele products effective today. We are also calling on the general public, particularly those residing in towns where the tour is planned to take place, to use all legal and peaceful means to ensure that Teddy Afro will not succeed in using this tour to make a mockery of our massacred ancestors. 

    Remember Anole, #BoycottBedele
    Honor victims of Gulale, #BoycottBedele
    #BoycottBedele #Oromo #Ethiopia 

    Get Involved
    Quit Bedele and convince your associates to do so
    Print and distribute flyers and posters
    Join our facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/265044716979775/
    Follow us on twitter: https://twitter.com/Lagadhubedellee
    Tweet and update you Facebook status using hashtag #BoycottBedele #Ethiopia

    Call Bedele and express your disapproval 0 114703014/13
    Contact Heineken via the following representatives 
    1) Johan Doyer, General Manager of Heineken Ethiopia 
    Email: johan.doyer@heineken.com 
    Phone: 00251-113719026. 
    2) Marnie Kontovraki, Brands and Consumer PR 
    Email: pressoffice@heineken.com 
    3) George Toulantas, Director of Investor Relations 
    Email: Investors@heineken.com
    4) Sonya Ghobria, Senior Investor Relations Manager 
    Email: sonya.ghobrial@heineken.com 
    5) Hans-Sjouke Koopal, HEINEKEN Netherlands, 
    Email: persinfo@heineken.nl
    https://www.facebook.com/gelana.negasa?hc_location=stream

    By Kukkissa, Sidama Reporter from Sidama Capital Hawassa, 

    December 26, 2013

    I. The theme. 

    I start my brief discussion by asking the Sidama readers what does national consciousness mean to you individually and how can the Sidama as a nation be an effective catalyst of the change that is dearly needed? What are the challenges? Does the Sidama nation feel comfortable with the Status-Quo, if not why? Cognizant of the fact that the Sidama nation in particular the subjugated nations and nationalities in general are under dire humanitarian conditions, these questions remain indisputably critical. 

    The other area I’m going to discuss is what opportunities are available to the Sidama nation that are hardly exploited? Why the Sidama nation often becomes the victim of repeated deceits and manipulations of the incumbent regime as was the case during all its predecessors? Why the Sidama nation is treated differently within current Ethiopian political arrangement? 

    Ultimately, do we really understand the right of the Sidama nation is blatantly denied by the incumbent regime for the past 22 years in addition to others injustice the Sidama nation shares with others nations and nationalities of the country? If we do, what is the ways forward? 

    The final aim of this piece of work is initiating further discussions among the wider Sidamas, the Sidama youth, intelligentsia involving Sidama Diaspora to increase the consciousness of the wider society whose eyes aren’t enough opened to look at as tragic situation unfolds in Sidamaland; whose ears aren’t attentively listening to the ongoing outcries of the society in pursuit of justice, democracy, freedom and liberty in their own land in particular, in others subjugated regions at large.

    I would also like to initiate further debate on how to learn the direction of peaceful struggle for Sidama nation, by the Sidamas individually and in collaboration with others subjugated nations and nationalities of the Ethiopian (Abyssinian) Empire State. I will also show that the Sidama nation actually can undoubtedly break the backbone of oppressive regime if the nation is able to unlock its potential on understanding its rights and obligations on demanding own rights, not begging. 

    II. National Consciousness as a Precursor to Nationalism & Unity.

    For nationalism to be explained, there need to be fundamental pre-requisites. They include boundaries which keeps given nation together in any geographical area, common language with which the community communicate, cultural unity that uniquely characterises any nation and moral contract that subconsciously unites the whole segments of societies wherever they might be and finally socio-economic circumstances benefiting concerned members of communities- although this can apply to entire different nations and nationalities sharing the same boundaries of given country. In some cases however, boundaries become irrelevant. 

    For instance, whether one Jewish person with his/her family lives in Africa, Asia, Australia, Canada, U.S.A or Europe, his/her unity with her/his root remain as strong as those who are in Israel. A Jewish man and women born and bred and live in India goes to serve his/her national services in Israel for given period of time and returns back to India after he/she has completed his/her services. Eventually, such groups of people remain as reservists and standby for calls at any time of his/her life (age permitting) if they were needed by their country. Their national consciousness isn’t determined by their boundaries as they remain committed to their root and defending their people, national interest and boundary. 

    This, a very precise example advises us how the 7,908.000 (2012) populated Israel defends its interests and national integrity based on principle that is cemented on common values they inherited from their ancestors and their unwavering determination to adhere to it with whatever the cost. Distances never diminish their nationalism and national identity. 

    From this example we can draw conclusion on the fact that national consciousness emanates from a shared value, aspiration, determination for defending these values, pride on own identity, national self-consciousness and planning to preserve it for generations by devising strategy on how to defend it from external influences depending on the dynamism of the society. Do we all Sidamas, young and old feel that we are nationalist in any way? Is our principle on defending Sidama’s national interest is compatible with above assertions? 

    III. Challenges 

    3. 1. Lack of Understanding

    ‘My son seek knowledge and Wisdom as this remains the pillar of your life throughout’, my late father advices me. He says if you are short of food today, you can buy or can produce one tomorrow; but if you are short of knowledge and wisdom on how to do this, your life becomes incomplete, he says. He was correct, may his soul rest in peace. Knowledge is power! Knowledge is resources. As they currently call it ‘information is power’. Knowledge comes from the right information. The current global civilised norm states that a well-informed, therefore, critical society is stronger as a society, productive and efficient as a nation, knowledgeable on how to live responsibly reasonable life and ultimately has got know how on how to build futurity for the society at large. These all can be only possible if there is a freedom of expression and the rule of law is practicable. 

    The current Ethiopian TPLF’s government has got a constitution that is praised by its Western allies and supporters and regarded as relevant, highly inclusive and progressive. The aforementioned precise constitution unconditionally guarantees nations and nationalities of Ethiopian Empire State the right to freely and unconditionally exercise their rights to the extent of cessation, let alone becoming regionally self-administrative; the quest the Sidama nation remained demanding for the past 22 years. The Sidama civilians paid ultimate sacrifices of precious life when the security forces slaughtered 100s of civilians demanding these rights on May 24, 2002. 

    The constitution also unequivocally asserts that these rights are also irreplaceable with anything else as they become complete only when they are constitutionally and legally implemented. There isn’t and can’t be ‘if’ or ‘but’ in the constitution. They are crystal clear, therefore, none of the others replacements can do the job. 

    The incumbent regime also doesn’t have whatsoever rights to advocate otherwise as doing so undermines the ethos and principles of the constitution about which the regime prides itself at the global scale. Therefore, having such unshakable knowledge on this critical matter will be crucial for the Sidama nation to succeed in asserting its rights as will be the case with others subjugated nations and nationalities. These rights alone aren’t an answer for Sidama’s quest for freedom and justice; there will be several miles to walk to achieve the ultimate demands of the Sidama nation. However, as these are granted to others but denied to Sidama nation, therefore they remain burning demands in addition to others issues. There isn’t and never be replacement to this as long as the constitution is valid and in operation. 

    If there was the rule of law in the Empire State, the regime calls it democratic, the regime will be sued for its failure to respond to Sidama nation’s quest and for the time elapsed without addressing these matters, it would have also obliged to pay compensation to systematic underdevelopment induced in Sidamaland. For those who can’t articulate what I’m discussing and for those who prefer obliviousness, this sounds utopian; however, it is a prevailing fact which the Sidama nation must know by opening their eyes to see properly and their ears to listen to the reality their nation is driven to live under. Having such deeper understanding that there isn’t and never be substitute to constitutional rights other than its implementation, is a key in increasing the level of its success. 

    3.2. Deep Rooted erroneous Beliefs created by Successive Political Establishment.

    The Sidama people as others subjugated nations and nationalities of the country are driven into believing distorted politics on the fact that the south is the symbol of Ethiopian unity; the slogan that spans back to the beginning of the conquest. All the subjugated nations and nationalities were lectured by the successive northern rulers, that there is no culture other than Ethiopian culture, there isn’t any languages other than Ethiopian language, there isn’t any music other than Ethiopian music (yet all of these belong to Amhara and to some extent to Tigre). 

    Majority peoples of the subjugated nations and nationalities erroneously assert that the above is acceptable. An over century old dictated story becomes reality if people can’t see with their critical eyes and aren’t able to confidently question and challenge the status-quo. The TPLF regime did this since 1991. Although it theoretically broke these taboos, what it’s doing to Sidama nation in particular to others subjugated nation in general contradicts with its theory; therefore, its rhetoric remains fallacy. The colonial subjects are also obliged to accept that they are there always to be ruled eternally. Another deep rooted notion on that ‘God appoints officials, therefore people don’t have anything to say or to do with them’ has got debilitating impact on defending own fundamental rights, as this remains common notion challenging far-sighted nationalists aspiring good for all. 

    According to Bible/Quran/Waqaa/Magano, God the creator vehemently hates injustice, unfairness and persecution. His prophets officially denounced injustice of all kinds and shapes. Jesus Christ himself rejected injustice and crucified for his rejection by the authorities. Therefore, there isn’t any evidence stating that God had forbade people from seeking their rightful rights in a peaceful and non-violent manner. Thus, sitting at home and waiting for God to provide is, utter ‘foolishness’ if not selfishness. 

    Renowned, Dr Martin Luther King Jr, was a blessed Christian who vehemently rejected injustices, segregation, subjugation and colour coded racism. Eventually, he was assassinated by white supremacists for his beliefs. The founder of Islam, Prophet Mohammed also strongly opposed to injustices for the belief he was also persecuted by then authorities. Mahatma Gandhi was also another example of devoted religious (Buddhist) who unwaveringly fought injustice and ultimately defeated it. Therefore, this needn’t to be a misleading and wrongful understating on the fact that such belief are logical and religious. 

    3.3. Its Sons and Daughters supporting the current Regime

    The main problem to Sidama nations’ failure to achieve its legitimate rights to regional self-administration is the presence of irresponsible and reckless Sidama cadres those who aren’t accountable to Sidama nation, but to the rulers. With all they can the cadres continuously blocked the Sidama nation from asserting these rights. If the level of Sidama nation’s consciousness increases however, these cadres become pointless simply because the Sidama nation can ignore them and continue with their peaceful quests until it’s been responded constitutionally. 

    3. 4. Confusion with identity 

    Misunderstanding the nobility of own culture due to systematic subjugation and fallacious mantra of the rulers that dictates Ethiopian-ness at the expense of the inferiority of others nations also plays key role in allowing the persistent of injustice. The erroneous belief that the current injustices imposed by the TPLF led regime is equal to all peoples while the northern rulers tacitly consider the ruling of others eternally is their God-given rights is inherently and fundamental wrong and misleading. These coupled with the lack of international exposer and lack of free media, for numerous subjugated Ethiopian nations and nationalities, the long dictated propaganda and fallacy becomes a reality of life. Such erroneous assertions of self-image (identity) further distorts the whole concept of defending own collective rights as inferiority complex and identity crisis becomes part & parcel of life. 

    Lack of deeper understanding of own culture, therefore, giving it less consideration due to a number of reasons including the fact that the Sidama cultural practices were regarded as equivalent to worshiping devil has got negative effect on issues related with Sidama identity as is the case with others subjects. Relegating own language by prioritising the languages of settlers or hardly bothering for own cultural significances when other priorities such as imported religious practices dominating the lives of majority will be also another negative addition. 

    The Sidama cultural practice as others Kushites, however is one of the most egalitarian monotheistic belief, not a religion, yet the whole concept is believing in God the creator, almighty and omnipotent without religious practices but cultural. Nothing else. Therefore, the Sidama nation’s belief is based on the principles of equality, dignity, justices, fairness and liberty for all; more importantly respecting and defending nature and natural order. 

    The previous deep rooted erroneous assertions of Orthodox religion followers with the intent of denigrating Sidama culture has directly contributed to some degree of identity confusion and lack of direction among the Sidama as is the case under Europe’s African colonies. Such over a century old misguided propaganda once again can influence those whose level of international awareness is limited. Both, the orthodox followers and Ethiopian Empire state have propagated this time and again whilst imposing their culture and religion on Sidama nation; telling them that theirs is irrelevant and inferior.

    These all could be caused due to lack of international exposure and free Medias where varying ideas and in-depth analysis can take place. These coupled with all others have negatively impacted on the furtherance of Sidama nation’s nationalism and national consciousness. 

    IV. Opportunities

    There are ample opportunities for the Sidama nation. The first and foremost is the validity of constitution. It’s a legal document that must be adhered to. Therefore it is our weakness which is hindering us from achieving it. The Sidama as well as others democracy cherishing institutions and individuals must support the Sidama cause. The other opportunity is that the Sidama has got historically strong and indefatigable unity when it comes to defending its national interests. Theses strengths coupled with the new generations’ unshakable approach to asserting these rights will help the Sidama nation to succeed in short period of time. 

    Another opportunity is that the Sidama has got dedicated groups of internationally exposed intellectuals who can provide the nation with strategic direction for peaceful and non-violent resistances-potentially capable of shaking the foundations of oppressors once and for all. 

    The other opportunity is that the Sidama cadres are living in Sidama region and implementing the federal regimes polices of subjugation, deprivation and flagrant violations of human rights of the Sidama nation. These groups of Sidama cadres could be wholly rejected and fully ostracised if once Sidama has got enough knowledge, determination and united courage. Finally, the Sidama can potentially garner ample supports from others Ethiopian nations and nationalities whose rights are grossly violated in one way or another, thus establishing alliances with likeminded ones is another biggest opportunity awaiting to be grasped. 

    V. Conclusion

    Defending own right isn’t begging authorities to give it to you; it’s all about understanding and unconditionally demanding it!! Just unite and demand your rights! Nothing else! Don’t fear anybody in this planet, but God the creator! Unite and Demand your rights and ostracise all traitor cadres who are good for nothing. Forge genuine unity with Oromo brothers and sisters, Ogaden Somali brothers and sisters, Gambela, Benshagul. Gecdeo brothers and sisters……… and others subjugated nations to dismantle the foundations of successive repressive regimes involving the current brutal one!

    Source: https://www.facebook.com/groups/289317227830513/permalink/538157446279822/