October 12,2016Video Credit : EBC
Under TPLF, deceit,fear and silence have become hallmarks when it comes to expressing political opinion. Many became members of the ruling party either because they can deceit or of fear ,political or economic, after the 2005 deadly crackdown on dissent. In that sense,it may not be very far from truth to say that Ethiopia is a place where what George Orwell said is accurate ; “In a time of Universal Deceit — telling the truth is a revolutionary act”
TPLF’s relentless commitment to attack freedom of expression,among other things, finally produced the political situation that threatened the system ; a situation that it can not control even after killing thousands of Ethiopians. The desire is not just freedom of speech now. All the manifestations of the popular protest point to the fact that the desire is revolution – which the regime is still misrepresenting, of course deliberately,as demand for reform.
Even after the outbreak of nation wide protest that pushed the regime to verge of collapse, speaking political truth on state television takes bravery.
A few weeks ago, a young activist, Anania Sorri, told pro-regime journalists like it is when he appeared in their own studio for an interview. His resolve,courage and clarity got Ethiopians on social media talking. His boldness in fact got the pro-regime journalist in the studio jump from his seat in an emotional instinctive like reaction to the truth Anania was talking about. The issue of Tigraian, only less than 6% of the total population, domination is something that everyone sees every where in Ethiopia whether it is in politics, economy or other realms. But when it comes to telling it like it is, there does not seem to be the resolve that Annaia demonstrated. Either it runs contours of political correctness or fear.
This week, a notable Ethiopian actor and writer,Hailu Tsegaye, made a brave statement when he appeared on a talk show on state television. He blamed the ruling party for the current crisis in Ethiopia and advised that it can not solve it by killing people.
This is unusual and is perhaps additional harbinger of change. May be the day when speaking political truth is no longer seen as an act of bravery, as it should be, is not far.