Saturday, June 15, 2024
HomeEthiopian NewsIrreechaa Celebration Takes Center Stage in Addis Ababa

Irreechaa Celebration Takes Center Stage in Addis Ababa

Irreechaa Addis Ababa
Irreechaa celebration in Addis Ababa on live transmission by state media – EBC (Photo : screenshot from the video)


Irreechaa celebration is underway in Ethiopia’s capital, Addis Ababa. On Friday, the Addis Ababa Police Department announced the  closure of 14 major roads to ensure the smooth flow of festivities, which are set to last for two days.

Irreechaa is the revered day of observance for the Waqe Fena traditional religion, typically marked near water bodies. However, in the urban setting of Addis Ababa, it finds its location near an artificial lake initiated by Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed after he took  office in 2018. It has been about three years since the Irreecha celebration started in Addis Ababa. 

The event draws participation from Abbaa Gaddaas,  elders who practice the Waqe Fana traditional faith, as well as government officials.

The celebrations in the capital have magnetized hundreds of thousands of people, many hailing from the Oromia region.

This Sunday, the commemoration will continue in Bishoftu (Debre Zeit) along the shores of Lake Hora, where the religious rituals take place.

For ethnic Oromo politicians, activists, and practitioners of the faith, Irreechaa signifies a “thanksgiving” day that marks the conclusion of the rainy season and heralds the arrival of a new one.

Notably, the government has allocated significant state resources to make the Irreechaa celebrations grand and to make it  a “unifying event for all Ethiopians.”  However, some voices within Ethiopia raise concerns, suggesting that the government may be overemphasizing the Waqe Fana ritual of Irreechaa while imposing restrictions on open-air religious celebrations of the Ethiopian Church. This was evident when Meskel, “The Finding of the True Cross,” was celebrated on September 26, just two weeks after the Ethiopian New Year.

Ethiopian Broadcasting Corporate (EBC) and State-owned media outlets were transmitting the event live as seen in the EBC video featured above. 

It’s essential to note that over 70 percent of Addis Ababa’s residents do not belong to the ethnic Oromo group, and the Waqe Fena faith, in its present state, is predominantly practiced in the Oromo region , not in Addis Ababa.

Ethiopia celebrated its ancient New Year at the beginning of September.


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  1. Breaking News : Hungry crocodile gobbles up python in South African park

    A crocodile catches a python in Kruger National Park in South Africa. Photo by Gayle Erasmus/
    1 of 3 | A crocodile catches a python in Kruger National Park in South Africa.
    An unsuspecting python chose the wrong time to come and have a drink in Kruger National Park in South Africa, when out of nowhere, a super hungry crocodile shows up.

    Gayle Erasmus witnessed the extraordinary event on the Sabie River Bridge just south of Lower Sabie.

    ***You are hypocrites, as usual. You posted this mesmerising article to introduce this awkward phrase:” “However, some voices within Ethiopia raise concerns, suggesting that the government may be overemphasizing the Waqe Fana ritual of Irreechaa while imposing restrictions on open-air religious celebrations of the Ethiopian Church.”
    Dear Borkena editors, you appear to be gifted with whining, crying, moaning, etc. You should level up this incredible talent.

  2. shit head, this is just a narrative setting bullshit piece of article used to distort the event instead inform, even the thing you said about meskel is complete fabrication, there was no restrictions all that was said was no other flags, symbols, t-shirts etc other than those authorized by the EOTC. If I were to flip you idiotic words then the fact that the government prohibited any other flags, symbols other than that of the abba gadaas’ should be interpreted as “restrictions”.

    total was of the 4 mins I expedited to read this article, and complete waste of internet resources for the writer, publisher, reader, promoter etc.

  3. Irreecha is a festival that belongs to all of us. Oromos are either Muslims or Christians and never wavered from these two religions when they celebrate this Thanksgiving Day. The same goes to our Amhara brothers and sisters. They are also Muslims or Christians and still remain devout to these two religions when they celebrate traditional festivities. I don’t blame some of you if you don’t feel comfortable about this celebration because it has been used to accost you with it by bigoted individuals among my own ethnic group. One of such bigots has the audacity to tell the American audience that Oromos including me are neither Muslims nor Christians. I can tell you this about this blabber mouth. He would never say that to my face in person or any Oromo in the old country. Apparently there is financial motive for him saying that! Back there in Bishoftu everyone goes back to his mosque or church after this celebration is over. Just like the Thanksgiving Day in the West the celebration would be over the next day.

    Happy Irreecha Thanksgiving y’all!!

  4. While we are understandably preoccupied with what is going on in country that produced us all, we should now pay attention with the latest violence in the Middle East. A state of war has now existed between Hamas and Israel where hundreds of innocent civilians have lost their lives on both sides. Accusations on both sides have been flying and the latest one is blaming Iran for helping Hamas arm, plan and carry out the unprecedented assault on Israel. This conflict can go out of control at any moment unless EU, USA and Egypt get involved so that will not happen. I bet you the other group of gangsters, Hezbollah, is itching to get into the action. The all-out war in which Iran is involved can bring the entire region to a standstill since both and Israel and Iran have nuclear bomb capabilities. Our old country can be a bystander victim in such atomic mayhem. Let’s pray for the rapid de-escalation of this war while it is still at its early stage.


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