Give Medrek enough rope and it will hang itself.

Dilwenberu Nega
April 28 2010

Medrek is playing with fire this time round. As if its refusal not to be a signatory of the Code of Conduct was not a clear sign of its intention not to play by the rules of the game; as if its whinging about its wholly unfounded allegations against EPDRF was a reflection of its internal instability; we now are told by its Chairman that the electorate can take the law into their hands if they consider the outcome of the elections contrary to their expectations.

Speaking to Medrek supporters on Monday 26th April Medrek’s supremo Prof Beyene Petros fulminated: “The public will use violence to overthrow a government which fails to deliver on its promises…..overthrowing such a government would not be a new phenomenon as it had been taking place in different parts of the world.” The effect of such a pronouncement delivered a mere three weeks ahead of Decision Day 2010 must not be underestimated. Though Medrek has refused to be party to the Code of Conduct, it is duty bound to abide by its terms and conditions, now the Agreement has been made into law by an Act of Parliament. Ventilating the notion of resorting to a takeover binge would instantly be at variance with the terms and conditions enshrined both in the Code of Conduct Act and the Constitution of FDRE.

The Rt.Hon Professor Beyene Petros MP might be under the impression that he can say what he wants secure in the knowledge that he is shielded by an MP’s immunity. He may have a point here as Parliament – unlike in Great Britain where Parliament is dissolved during the electoral process – is neither dissolved nor in recess. But surely no MP must be above the law or the Constitution. As a ruling party with responsibilities of defending the Constitution at all times as well as of ensuring elections are conducted in a free, fair and peaceful manner, EPDRF is spot on by its prompt denunciation of Beyene Petros’ foray into a combustible sphere. It, therefore, behoves all the signatories of the Code of Conduct Agreement to follow suit.

Analysts of the current political scene in Ethiopia have been warning against Negedeism rearing its ugly head within the holy of holies of the hastily cobbled together coalition – Medrek. Ethiopia and its people had been made to pay a heavy price during the 2005 National Elections as Negedeism ephemerally ‘enjoyed’ the oxygen of publicity by wooing the gullible to take recourse to a takeover binge in selected towns and cities.

Medrek’s current wayward behaviour is a recipe for disaster and a factor that would lead to its premature death. Meanwhile, however, the warning to the Government is loud and clear: “If Medrek deceive EPDRF once, shame on Medrek; if Medrek deceive EPDRF twice shame on EPDRF.”