Twententy Ethiopian Organizations based in the Diaspora on Wednesday released a statement in reaction to the Ethiopian Peace agreement that was signed in Pretoria, South Africa.
They express concern that peace can not be preserved if the agreement is hinged on what they described as a “deeply flawed constitution.”
The Full statement reads as follows :
“ An Exclusionary Peace Agreement Based on an Ethnicist Constitution will NOT Preserve the Peace in Ethiopia
November 9, 2022
The politics of polarization, institutionalized in the ethnocentric Ethiopian constitution and the government, has predictably produced the bitter harvest of intensifying civil strife. Ethiopians are now accustomed to suffering mass pillage, political violence, and the four atrocity crimes (genocidal acts, ethnic cleansing, crimes against humanity, and war crimes). The most egregious examples are the ongoing attacks on civilians (especially Amhara residents) in the Oromia Region and the two-year-old lose-lose civil war engulfing some 20 million people in the regional states of Tigray, Amhara, and Afar.
The Peace Agreement for the Permanent Cessation of Hostilities, signed between the Federal Government of Ethiopia and the Tigrayan People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) on November 3, 2022 promises to herald peace by silencing the guns. However, the deal evades the fault line of endemic instability. The maiming and death of hundreds of thousands and the displacement of millions of innocent civilians must be rendered wholly “unthinkable.”
If and only if the Agreement can robustly be implemented, there may be cause for cautious optimism to repair deep-seated mistrust by affirming respect for Ethiopia’s territorial integrity, recognition of federal monopoly over large-scale violence, resort to the AU and UN transitional justice frameworks for redress and reconciliation, and support for an equitable relief and rebuilding of the war-torn regions.
Regrettably the Agreement suggests that enduring peacebuilding with justice can be obtained through the deeply flawed constitution. It lacks a clear roadmap to address myriad structural problems, which include a workable plan for disarming and demobilizing combatants, including the large and well-armed ethnic armies of the Tigray and the Oromia Regional States; explicit commitments to settling the political and administrative status of the Wolqait and Raya regions which were forcibly annexed and abused by the TPLF; and a clear modality for the accountability process of truth-finding, transitional justice, and national reconciliation with full representation of all stakeholders.
Ethiopia’s political problems go far beyond the mutually destructive contest over monopoly of state power by two ethnicist political parties, the ruling Prosperity Party and the erstwhile ruling party of TPLF. Incessant demonizing and continued marginalization of the Amhara remain the most formidable obstacles to post-conflict renewal.
We humbly note that a robust settlement should be the next goal by using the fragile peace deal as a springboard for an inclusive transitional process. Ethiopia needs to clean up the institutions of grand corruption and craft a citizen-based democratic constitution in a transparent and participatory manner. Ultimately, it is sustained and constructive citizen engagement that will bring enduring peace with justice and unity.
1. Adwa Great African Victory Association (AGAVA) 2. All Shewa Ethiopian People Multipurpose International Association 3. The Amhara Association in Queensland, Australia
4. Amhara Dimtse Serechit
5. Amhara Well-being and Development Association 6. Communities of Ethiopians in Finland
7. Concerned Amharas in the Diaspora
8. Ethio-Canadian Human Rights Association
9. The Ethiopian Broadcast Group
10. Ethiopian Civic Development Council (ECDC)
11. Freedom and Justice for Telemt Amhara
12. Global Alliance for Justice – The Ethiopian Cause 13. Global Amhara Coalition
14. Gonder Hibret for Ethiopian Unity
15. Major Lemma Woldetsadik Memorial Foundation 16. Network of Ethiopian Scholars (NES)
17. Radio Yenesew Ethiopia
18. Selassie Stand Up, Inc.
19. Vision Ethiopia
20. Worldwide Ethiopian Civic Associations Network (WE-CAN) ”
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