Mustafa Mohammed says Controversy over historical narrative unnecessary

borkena
September 11, 2019

Based on a recent interview he had with Oromia Media Network, a broadcaster that many Ethiopians consider as a mouthpiece of radical Oromo ethno-nationalists, Mustafa Mohammed, acting president of Somali region of Ethiopia, made it clear that not only supports ethnic-based federalism but he thinks it is the only viable way for Ethiopia at this point in time.

What sets him apart, arguably, from Oromo ethno-nationalists is the civility with which he handles differences and that he does not seem to be interested in demonizing Ethiopia by pulling fabricated or perverted historical narrative. 

He demonstrated that during his speech on Wednesday at the National Palace in an event organized to celebrate the eve of Ethiopian New Year – Enkutatash. 

In his speech, he said it is not a must to have an agreement over historical narratives so as to live together, and encouraged “tolerance” towards it just like there is tolerance over cultural, religious and social differences.  It seems he has overlooked the point that the historical narrative that invites controversy is one that is politically motivated and hence the production of politicians. It is not a difference, in most cases, between professional historians.  But he is right that controversy over historical narrative could be stand in the way of “national consensus,” as EPRDF politicians call it.  

He also blamed lack of political wisdom and political morality. He says that law is not enough to bring about democracy.  

Watch his speech from the video below (Unfortunately, we do not have English subtitle for the video and it is in Amharic)

Video: embedded from Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporation (EBC) YouTube channel
Cover photo: screenshot from the video



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