Ethiopian Victory Day commemorated despite Coronavirus situation

Abiy Ahmed said in his message of the 79th anniversary of Ethiopian Victory Day , the sacrifice in blood and life was not for glory but for a united and sovereign Ethiopia

Representative of Ethiopian Patriots during the celebration at Arat Kilo. Photo credit : ENA

May 5, 2020 

Despite the Coronavirus situation and social distancing measures in place, Ethiopia has celebrated the 79th anniversary of victory day over fascist Italy.

On May 5, 1941, the Ethiopian flag was raised in the capital Addis Ababa after five years of Italian occupation. The day also marked the return of Emperor Haile Selassie from five years of exile abroad.

It was celebrated near Dilachin (which means in Amharic our victory) Statue near Arat Kilo in the capital Addis Ababa.

Representatives of Ethiopian Patriots and the Addis Ababa City administration had put a wreath near the statue.  

President Sahle-Work Zewde did not attend the ceremony at Arat Kilo. Yet, she conveyed a message for the victory day.

“Happy Anniversary of the 79th Victory Day. Although we can not celebrate Victory Day near the Patriot’s Statue as usual due to the COVID 19, I have a strong belief that we commemorate colorfully ,in spirit, the unforgettable heroism of Ethiopia’s children,” she said in her message.

Likewise, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed has conveyed his message in three languages – Amharic, Oromigna, and English. He even composed a short poem in Amharic hailing the heroism of Ethiopian patriots.

“We commemorate the brave resistance of our forefathers and foremothers that paved the path to the freedoms we enjoy today. Their fight for country and people. Their unparalleled commitment to love of Ethiopia demonstrated through the sacrifice of blood and life. Not for mere glory. But for a united and sovereign Ethiopia…,” he wrote on his social media page.

In the past few weeks, Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed was criticized by most Ethiopians for changing the state emblem of Ethiopia, a lion, which was on either side of the entrances of Emperor Menelik’s palace with a Peacock.  

Although not explicit, Abiy Ahmed’s message seems to denote that the Unity of Ethiopia is experiencing a challenge. Leaders in the Tigray region of Ethiopia are increasingly taking paths that are in a collision course with the central (Federal government). In the latest strings of measures, the central committee of Tigray Regional State (TPLF), an ethnic-based political organization that is governing the region, announced that it will conduct an election defying the electoral board of the country’s measure to postpone the election.

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