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Ginbot 7’s statement — is it humbuggery or is it skulduggery?

By Dilwenberu Nega
Tigrai Onlne December 04, 2013

According to those who had abandoned Ginbot 7 to form “Ginbot 7 Democratic,” “The Party subsists on a daily diet of all forms of lies: white lie, big lie and bare-faced lie.” And no one should ever doubt that no one from among G7’s arm-chair politicians knows the power of lies in politics better than its former commie Chairman, Dr Birhanu Nega, for he is said to be still drawing inspiration from one of Vladimir Lenin’s sayings:“A lie told often enough becomes the truth.”No wonder then that in the delusional world of members of G7, the prescription for survival is: “A lie a month keeps G7 fit for another month.”

Ginbot 7's and ESAT's unabashed adoration of President Isaias Afeworki
It has been noticed for long that Ginbot 7's officials, operatives and media outlets, such as ESAT, hardly talk about the deteriorating political, economic and social conditions in Eritrea, but they love to make up lies about everything in Ethiopia.

On 9 November 2013 G7 concocted a sensational story by claiming G7’s nebulous “People’s Forces” had managed to preemptively foil a GoE’s attempt to assassinate its Secretary General, Ato Andargatchew Tsiege. By way of evidence, it made public a hacked telephone conversation between the National Security Advisor to Prime Minister Haile Mariam, Ato Tsegaye Berehe, and a would-be assassin.

You don’t have to be an intelligence analyst to, therefore, conclude that such a sensational allegation, based on flimsy evidence, will have no leg to stand in the court of Ethiopian public opinion. First, as anyone with rudimentary knowledge of the workings of security services of any nation would tell you, it is not the job of a National Security Advisor to a Head of Government to make any contact with ground agents, never mind to climb down the chain of command and issue rules of engagement over a mobile line to assigned agents. Secondly, friends of Ato Tesegaye Berehe refuse to believe that the voice on the recording is that of him. Third, and perhaps the most convincing of all, is if G7’s claim had a shred of truth in it why is it then that G7 failed to make public a video recording of the incident? After all, what better a ‘war booty’ than this can G7 supporters in the diaspora in order to quench their thirst for a break through in G7’s elephantine speed to topple EPRDF.

As if making a fool of itself by the assassination attempt charade of 9 November wasn’t enough a debacle to its reputation, G7 yet again, washed its eyes with salt and issued a laughable statement last night: “The EPRDF-led Government of Ethiopia has offered talks with Ginbot 7.”Even critics of EPRDF are bound to dismiss G7’s humbuggery or skulduggery as utterly nonsensical. The reasons are many and varied.

In Ethiopia, where the House of People’s Representatives (HPR) reigns supreme over the Council of Ministers, it is literally impossible for such a scenario to unravel without the prior approvaI of the HPR, which in 2009 had declared Ginbot 7: “A terrorist organisation,” and the ban is still in force. There would be no excuse for Prime Minister Haile Mariam to flout the HPR resolution and approach Ginbot 7. Fortunately, unlike Eritrea, we are not ruled by whimsical leaders. Even more bewildering is the Statement’s claim of EPRDF’s Ethiopia to be in such a dire straits that it had decided to strike a peace deal.

Ethiopia in dire straits? What dire straits?

Look no further than the week that was: the World Bank reported that Ethiopia has just met the MDG goal of reducing child mortality, cutting deaths from one in five a year to one in 15; one of its development partners, the European Union, signed a deal worth Euro 212.4 million for the construction of new roads and for the enhancement of health services; the Economist held its successful “The African High-Growth Summit” in Addis Ababa where Ethiopia was commended for a job well done. So, this talk of “Ethiopia is in dire straits” by Birhanu Nega on ESAT is nothing more than Mickey Mouse politics.

If any group is in dire straits, it is none other than G7 itself. It has lost credibility among the majority of Ethiopian expats. It continues to suffer from a dearth of viable alternative socio-economic policies popular enough to woo new members. Membership is at an all time low. Birhanu Nega keeps falling from one gaffe to another with impunity. There exists no semblance of accountability within G7 - one of the major reasons for a legion of former G7 members to leave and form their version of G7 Democratic. Its leader suffers from an image problem with more and more Ethiopian expats seeing him more of a sheep trader than a prospective prime minister of Ethiopia. Fund from Eritrea has now become dependent on outcome. And finally, despite Birhanu’s braggadocio on ESAT, G7 has so far failed to prove beyond a shadow of doubt, that its forces are in control of at least a square mile of Ethiopia.

The Government of Prime Minister Haile Mariam Desalgn,on the other hand, would have no rhyme or reason to extend an olive branch to Dr Birhanu Nega. In the past the EPRDF has made it repeatedly clear to all and sundry that it would not enter into any kind of negotiation with armed group, never mind with terrorist Ginbot 7. The EPRDF is allergic to attempts by any group to arm-lock it into accepting what it opposes on grounds of principle.The much feared and talked about turmoil in Ethiopia, following the death of former Prime Minister Meles Zenawi, has failed to materialise precisely because the system in place is designed to withstand possible vicissitudes of fate following the passing away of a leader.

Birhanu Nega is free to exercise his ‘inalienable’ right to live a life of lies, but he has no right whatsoever to pull wool over the eyes of Ethiopians. Not for the second time. Hence the buzz saying: “If Birhanu cheats you once shame on Him, if twice shame on YOU!”