Tigrai Onlne - December 28, 2013
Tewodros Kassahun also known as Teddy Afro was caught spewing poisonous anti Ethiopian propaganda this week. The incident sparked because in an interview Teddy Afro gave to a local Amharic magazine “Enqu”, the singer is quoted as saying the bloody campaign by King Menlik II to Southern Ethiopia was to unite Ethiopia. Enqu the Ethiopian Amharic magazine quoted Teddy Afro as saying “To me, the war Menlik II waged to unite Ethiopia was a holy war”.
Heineken Beer/Bedele signed an agreement with Teddy Afro last week to sponsor his yearlong national tour. The announcement on his official website reads “Teddy Afro in collaboration with Heineken Beer/Bedele will kick off his national concert tour. The artist and the organization have agreed to work together making the ‘Wede Fikir Guzo’ national tour possible for all Teddy fans to see”.
Many Ethiopians inside and outside Ethiopia are so angry at the owners of Heineken Beer/Bedele for associating their product with such a dividing and anti Ethiopian unity person. Especially Oromo Ethiopians are so furious about beadle sponsoring this very controversial singer to promote their product, many Ethiopians are calling to boycott Bedele Beer.
According to Opride.com there is a social media campaign against Bedele which was bought by Heineken about two years ago. Opride reported “The viral campaign, which goes with a hashtag #BoycottBedele, is asking beer drinkers in Ethiopia to ditch Bedele products and also pressure regional officers to withdraw the sponsorship. It has reportedly been featured on the state-run Oromia radio, which broadcasts in Oromo language to millions of listeners in the populous state”.
This is not the first time Teddy Afro put his foot in his mouth. About eight years ago he released a very insulting song called yasteseryal offending Ethiopian Tigraians. Most people from the Northern Ethiopian state of Tigrai despise him for insulting the TPLF fighters who paid the ultimate price to bring about the positive change we see in Ethiopia. Many who knew him very closely say he has deep-seated hate towards the people of Tigrai. He glorifies the Amhara rulers of Ethiopia and ridicules the rest of Ethiopians.
Tewodros Kassahun was convicted on December 5, 2008, sentenced to six years imprisonment and he was fined 18,000 Birr. He was convicted on two accounts; the first was for a hit and run incident in which an 18-year old homeless man was killed in November 2006. The second count was for fleeing from the scene of the crime, when he could have possibly helped the person he hit.
This time around he didn’t only hurt himself and his business, but the Bedele Beer Company might be shun by Ethiopian beer drinkers if not completely boycotted. It seems if the public uproar continues Bedele beer and Heineken would have to make a difficult decision and drop their sponsorship of Teddy Afro’s tour.