Is the notion of special right politically correct?
borkena, Ethiopian Video
The notion of “Oromia special rights“ over Addis Ababa has been widely discussed over social media and major media outlets.
It was first introduced to the existing constitution under article 49 and section five; but it is important to remember the circumstances under which the constitution was drafted and adopted as power negotiating tool between to ethnic based political parties – namely TPLF and its partner OPDO – without adequate public discussion. Literally, it was imposed from above.
For more than twenty-three years, the TPLF shelved the constitutional provision as it was not in its interest to use it. As the political situation in Ethiopia gets tense and TPLF got into a panic over perceived loss of consolidated power which could possibly lead to complete loss of power over Ethiopia, there emerged a need for TPLF government to dust off the constitutional provision on “Oromia special right.“ The ruling party`s council of ministers drafted regulations to hand over `special right over Addis Ababa`to Oromia and tabled it at the parliament (no opposition party has a seat). Discussion and the parliamentary decision is postponed for a date to be announced.
Meanwhile, diaspora based radical Oromo ethno-nationalists seized TPLF panic as an opportunity to advance irredentist claim over Addis Ababa (they call it Finefine). They went further to assert that it is not for the Oromos to claim special right over Addis Ababa. Rather it is “Other`s “ who should claim the special right as Addis Ababa is `naturally` Oromo land.
It is in the above context that the following part I panel discussion (it is in Amharic) between Journalist Kassahun Seboka of SBS Amharic and three other Ethiopian`s of Oromo origin is important.
Dr. Abraham Alemu, who is of oromo origin from Wellega, got to the bottom of the issue to note that the very name finefine, that is what radical oromo ethno-nationalists use, is actually an Amharic word. He bluntly added that Addis Ababa is for Ethiopia and Ethiopian`s. Emphasized in the discussion is that the notion of special right contradicts the basic constitutional and legal principle of equality.
Dr. Beyan Asoba and Ato Geletaw Zeleke also have share their take on the matter. What is your take? share it.
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