Oromo Federalist Congress makes accusations against the Amhara region in connection with alleged land grab and expansion to the Oromo region.
The Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC) on Monday released a statement that rather sounds like a systematic mobilisation for war alleging land grab in Oromia regional state by forces supported and orchestrated by Amhara regional state.
It is a statement from the executive committee of OFC, an ethnic Oromo nationalist party that has been radicalising the past few years under the cover of “peaceful struggle,” and is written in Oromo and Amharic languages.
OFC framed its statement as something that came out of a meeting called to discuss “the current situation in the country.”
First, it made claims that the war between the Federal government against what Oromo Federalist Congress called the “Oromo Liberation Army” is something that blurs the hope for peace. “It makes the country vulnerable to additional danger rather than bringing about solutions,” OFC said.
The solution is political, it added, and advised the government to resort to peaceful means to resolve the problem in the Oromo region of Ethiopia – just like the effort to resolve “the problem in the northern part of the country.”
However, the second point that OFC raised, which the statement discussed in detail, made numerous unsubstantiated claims of “land grab,” by the Amhara regional state.
“From recent reports that are made public, it is understandable that Armed forces originating from Amhara regional state have been undertaking land grabs in different areas of Oromia by transgressing recognized boundaries of Oromia,” it said.
Furthermore, it made claims that these armed groups displaced farming communities from their land holdings and killed the civilian population. Reference is made to places like East Wollega ( and that is one of the places where the Federal government is in a combat operation against the militant wing of Oromo Liberation Front or what OFC referred to as Oromo Liberation Army), Horo Guduru, North Shoa, West Shoa, and East Shoa.
“We have learned from our members and local communities that it [killing of farming communities and the land grab] is underway in a coordinated manner. Statements from Armed Ambara forces testify that,” said OFC without citing media through which the alleged statements were aired or published.
OFC also made claims about “indications” that the radical forces, which are said to be operating without recognition from Amhara regional state, as the statement indicated, are not doing it without support from Amhara Regional State.
In an attempt to substantiate this point, OFC cited that “Amhara region special forces have seized over 280 hectares of land in North Shoa by displacing Oromia farmers.”
In East Shoa, Fentale District, OFC added, “lands that belonged to Kereyu and Itu Oromo for centuries have been seized and that signboards have been placed to make it appear that the area is within the Amhara region.” It is public that the authorities in the Amhara region are undertaking the land grab and expansion, OFC claimed.
“The development is something that will lead to an open war between the brotherly people of the two regions”, OLF said.
Amhara regional state is yet to respond to the allegations from Oromo Federalist Congress.
OFC has been opposing the effort for national reconciliation in the country on alleged grounds of lack of inclusivity. The party has been criticised for not condemning the ceaseless massacre of ethnic Amhara farming communities living in the Wollega region of Ethiopia, among many other areas, by the radical Oromo militant group which OLF refers to as the Oromo Liberation Army.
The purpose of releasing a statement that could rather turn out to be an inciting one in a country where radicalised ethnic nationalist groups have been targeting civilians sounds irresponsible rather.
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