Targeting Tigrians by Abyi and His Collaborators, WHY?
By Berhanu Tsegay
Tigrai Online, Nov. 26, 2018
If Abiy, Gedu, Demeke and their foreign masters think they can push over the proud people of Tigrai, they are commenting a fatal mistake. Ethiopia WILL NOT SURVIVE BY EXCLUDING TIGRAI!!!
Silent and well-incentivized foreign-sponsored proxy war has already been tacitly declared on the Tigray People’s Liberation Front (TPLF) in particular and on the people of Tigray in general. This is a double-crossing act being committed over the Tigray people. In the first place, TPLF has done insignificant enhancements in economic development, blossoming of democracy, and in establishing good governance for the people of Tigray who paid countless and priceless sacrifices during the fight against Dergu regime.
While this people is the most disadvantaged one from TPLF’s 27 years of governance, surprisingly more hatred and worse ethnic-based discriminations have at this time aggravated to the highest level ever. Even beyond this, the newly politically empowered EPRDF born sect has even blatantly begun to target Tigrian elites, Tigrian Military generals and private companies owned by Tigrians, and throwing them to prisons illegally by infringing mandates of the judiciary body and the constitution of the country.
Recently, TPLF which is the most powerful party in government accused authorities the federal government of arresting members of its ethnic group in a politically-driven crackdown - an unprecedented public charge exposing deep rifts at the heart of the ruling elite. This has marked growing tensions between TPLF and the new so-called reformist prime minister (PM) Abiy Ahmed.
As some mainstream Medias posted, more than 80 security officers, officials, businessmen, many of which Tigrian, have been arrested under what the government said was a clamp-down on corruption and mistreatment of prisoners. However, this move is not genuine; it is being used to attack Tigrians under the pretext of corruption and human right abuses. An all-rounded offensive campaign against Tigrians is taking place in all directions. And, such a move is alleged to be at the Eritrean President Isayas’s service in the name of justice to prevail.
However, on the contrary, people are discontent with the PM’s silence on the ongoing killings and atrocities being committed in the regional state of Amhara targeting ethnic Kimant and Tegaru. Dr. Abyi is widely criticized for not paying attention on such unprecedented pogroms.
Likewise, the PM hasn’t effectively responded for the displacement of nearly 1 million people in the southern Gedeo and West Guji zones because of ethnic violence. The humanitarian crisis has worsened since the new PM took office, and his administration doesn’t seem to have the required commitment for the displaced hundreds of thousands of people who are in need of emergency aid.
Over the last decade, Ethiopia registered impressive economic performance. It was among the fastest growing economies in the world, averaging double-digit economic growth and cutting poverty by half. But, currently, due to the ever escalating conflicts and instabilities in many places of the country coupled with an aggravated daunting political tension among the ruling front parties, not even a single foreign investor could dare to invest. The PM doesn’t seem to be able to address domestic concerns by restoring peace and tranquility.
Despite Dr. Abyi has at this time reshuffled and filled his cabinet many females, this deed doesn’t appear to be timely and priority in regard to the nation’s current non-stoppable political turmoil practiced in sizable parts of the country.
As Washington Post indicated in its topical post, some African dictators undertake high political profile gender reforms so as to look like "inclusive and democratic"; improve their country’s image, hoping investors and lenders will look more favorably on a “modernizing autocrat.”
Such leaders more actively invest in gender reforms -- because by doing so, they assume to win a larger base of support through populism that helps them stay in power. By the same token, Abyi's administration is following the same outdated and childish game in the 21st century.
The newly appointed PM Abyi is the official vanguard of a home-made team (informally known as: - ‘Team-Leama’). Mr. Leama Megerssa where the ‘Team-Leama’ is named after his first name is the focal and informal brainchild of this team’s political conspiracy.
This team is instigating a tactic of “Destruction-Construction Approach” within the Ethiopian contemporary politics. Destructing the legacy system and clearing old guards of the Federalism, then constructing new establishments within the EPRDF domain, is the team’s main goal.
Many groups are targeting TPLF. Who and why?
Why Dr. Abyi is targeting TPLF?
Based on the organized agreement behind doors for his unanticipated holding of political power supported by USA, Egypt, and the Arab (especially Saudi-Arabia), the PM is paying back his old-debts for empowering him as PM of the country. In order to sustain his egocentric personal political power thirsty, the PM has to practically implement each and every order that come from the aforementioned foreign countries.
It is obvious that those countries’ interests in Ethiopia are expected to be implemented at the cost of the country’s national interests. The only remaining non-submissive political party is TPLF that is still fighting back to defend the country’s political-economy interests via lingering on its opposition against the current invasion of Neoliberalism that has already managed to baptize the new PM in the name and principles of ‘Neoliberalism’ and controlled his office directly from The White House in Washington DC.
In tandem with this, the PM seems to have been hit with inferiority complex and feeling of insecurity that the powerful epic TPLF old guards will not accept his stepping up as a PM. In order to stabilize that sense of naïve feeling, the PM has already set out staging plots of nabbing them under a disguise of corruption and human rights violations.
In addition to this, the PM wants to spoil and downgrade the psychological makeup of Tigrians. In his speeches made abroad for Ethiopian Diasporas, the PM had confirmed tacitly that he is working against all positive elements and backgrounds of the Tigrian people. He used many inciting and warmongering words that 'could' discourage and defame the historical and political roles the people of Tigray has been contributing to the nation. He even farther reduced to pronounce that TPLF/EPRDF didn't defeat Mengistu's regime, a clear script of his speech that completely discredits the heavy and priceless sacrifices paid by this people to topple the world-wide known butcher colonel Mengistu Hailmariam.
Moreover, Abyi Ahmed has begun to relegate importance of the Revolutionary Democracy model for Ethiopia. In various meetings and conferences, PM Abiy has officially rejected Revolutionary Democracy as a fruitful political ideology for the country. During a meeting held in 24/11/2018 at ECA (European Commission for Africa) hall on a theme of "Challenges & opportunities of the contemporary Ethiopian political transformation", the PM made an opening speech. In his speech he reiterated that revolutionary democracy was a failed model and thus must be dumped for another better political thinking and model.
As you may know, Revolutionary democracy is the principal ideology adhered by EPRDF for years where TPLF used to be at the forefront for its effective application. Unlike Abyi's unscientific speech, pragmatically, it is known that revolutionary democracy model has been fruitful in bringing fast, equitable and sustainable economic development for the last 10 years. These mushrooming Ethiopian annual economy growth rates were ranked among the top 5 in the world and usually the 1st in Africa. For adopting this model, percentage of the population that live below the Absolute-Poverty Line Standard was able to be meaningfully reduced to 22% in 2018 from more than 40% few years ago. Palpably, the success track record of Revolutionary democracy in this country is unequivocal.
Therefore, anybody may easily diagnose the reason for PM Abyi’s denunciation of Revolutionary Democracy as a model of change for the country is not sincere if not neoliberally- motivated due to the heavy hands or backs of foreign forces provided to him.
Hence, one can infer that the PM's repetitive rhetoric against Revolutionary democracy model is one way of discrediting TPLF's unquestionable as well as non-shivering leadership that resulted in bringing concrete economic success in the country. Oppositely, by trying to pretend as if those achieved quantifiable economic developments are in the air, the PM is making abortive attempts to soil the fabulous performances of TPLF and working hard to systematically remove this well-experienced party from the country's political domain. What a stupidity!!!
If he walks the talk, the immediate target in-sight would be the Developmental Democracy State Model. Even though, there were not yet any official attempts at policy and ideological change behind doors, his ECA's speech is a vivid unilateral move against what the front party (EPRDF) has agreed on in its previous (Hawassa's) assembly regarding the continuity of policy and political program.
Why Eritrean President Isayas Afeworki is targeting TPLF?
Isayas wants to revenge for his old shameful political and economic defeats. This is why Isayas’s recent visit to Amhara regional state where this regional government is also not leaving any stone unturned to weaken if not destroy TPLF in order to return back its old wishes for supremacy in the country’s political power hegemony. As a result, the historically once ardent enemies (Isayas and the political elites of Amhara) are currently playing the common political game by befriending each other under the principle of “The enemy of my enemy is my friend”.
Besides, Isayas knows well like the palm of his hands that it is only by first abolishing TPLF when he can be a free-lance and take imbalanced advantages over the Ethiopian cheap products and resources just like what he used to obtain during the first few years of his presidency which was assumed to be the core cause of the Ethio-Eritrean war.
Following the Ethio-Eritrea war in 1997/8, the UN had been imposing consecutive and devastative sanctions on Eritrea before they have been lifted in recent times. This had considerably annoyed Isayas for affecting his unattainable wishes “To make Eritrea attain the level of Malaysia’s development level ”.
After death of the strongest man in Africa (Melese Zenawi), and by capitalizing the existing weak and unwise Ethiopian PM, Isayas wants to be the most influential and king-maker person by interfering in the Ethiopian domestic political issues.
Why The West (particularly USA) is targeting TPLF?:-
Regarding the West's case, it is all about their inhumane and dysfunctional ideology of Neoliberalism. EPRDF has been adhering to a Democratic-Developmental state ideology that acts against the exploitative Neoliberal ideology. Their multi-national companies’ high aspiration of snatching and owning, the most lucrative State-owned companies (like:- Telcom, Banking and other major sectors), have been unsuccessful due to the TPLF driven political-economy ideology of the nation.
Therefore, the USA’s involvement via proxy in the political dispute with TPLF could be labeled as some sort of applying their ‘color revolution’. As a result, the USA’s strategic interference within the Ethiopian contemporary political crises, to some extent, seems holding ground particularly on the federal government sphere of the country, because the new PM Abyi has already begun to reflect and adopt some features of the Neoliberal ideology attributes. However, still they know that in order to make this wishful thinking completely real and sustainable, they have to thoroughly eradicate TPLF from the Ethiopian political stage.
Besides, the mammoth acceptance of China's intensive and extensive involvement in investment in Ethiopia in particular in the region as a whole, have also exacerbated USA’s abhorrence it has towards TPLF which it considers the party as a bosom friend of China.
TPLF-led EPRDF has been best friend of the Chinese communist party government due to similarity in their political-economy ideologies. Consequently, much of Ethiopia’s loans and aids, have been coming from China's Exim-Bank for country's large and unprecedented constructions of infrastructures and mega projects. Subsequently, this has also irritated the West and blaming TPLF.
Additionally, the geopolitical advantage of Ethiopia for the economically and politically sensitive region of the Middle-East is also one of the main pulling factors for the West to be keen on remotely controlling the political field of the country.
Why Egypt and Saudi-Arabia are targeting TPLF?
The crisis that erupted between Saudi-Arabia and Qatar led to the Middle East countries to be politically divided in to two blocs. The first bloc is Saudi-led bloc that encompasses (Egypt, Saudi Arabia, United Arab Emirates and Bahrain) and the second bloc contains Qatar and Turkey. From the onset of the crisis, the Saudi-led bloc cut diplomatic ties and hit Qatar with various kinds of embargoes. As a result, Qatar has already developed good relationship with Turkey. On the other category, Saudi Arabia has assisted Egypt’s president Al-Sisi financially in his efforts to rebuild the strained economy and Egypt is a key backer of Saudi Arabia’s regional policies.
Countries within the first bloc (particularly Egypt, Saudi Arabia) are branded as working against TPLF, while those in the opposite number are pro-TPLF. All are doing this for the sake of their own national interests or advantages.
For instance, TPLF as influential and most powerful party within the EPRDF-led government was at the front in facilitating and establishing the Nile Basin Initiative’s Cooperative Framework Agreement (CFA) which promotes a fair and equitable distribution of the Nile river water share among the nine Nile basin countries. This would definitely bring to an end Egypt’s monopoly over the Nile river which it likens the river as Egypt's “National Security Issue”.
Similarly, it is widely known that Egypt is capitalizing all available ‘opportunities’ that could discourage or terminate the ongoing construction of the Renaissance Dam. Egypt is sponsoring the current Ethiopian governing entity in taking any actions that are directly and indirectly related with the big dam's construction activities.
For instance, one can easily deduce a clear conclusion by simply having a look at the visible correlations among:- the orchestrated killing of Engineer Semegnew Bekele (CEO of the Renaissance Dam); the snap nabbing of METEC company CEO generals and experts (who were producing and building Electro-Mechanics part of the Dam); the intentionally created spats by the PM and his group against Salini-Company (which is the main building contractor company of the Dam); the arbitrary imprisonment of Shake-Mahammed Ali Alahamudin (who was pro-TPLF and provided more than 1.5 billion birr for construction of the Dam); and the PM's repetitive criticisms and pessimistic public speeches made about construction of this Dam.
Those hazardous actions of the PM are obviously moving forward with the purpose of terminating the Dam in return for Egypt's contribution or favor in plotting and sponsoring Dr. Abyi's conspicuous trajectory in holding the PM position.
By the same token, the recent visit of PM Abyi's and Isayas's made to Saudi-Arabia which was colorfully celebrated by presentation of Huge-Gold Medal award to both by the Saudi king, can loudly indicate the first successful phase of accomplishment of Egypt's and Saudi-Arabia's national interests in Ethiopia.
Therefore, it is the easiest and simplest thing to identify and understand the core driving factor why the PM is performing in such a way that endangers the very national-interests of the country. While presently Ethiopia is on the verge of civil war and began to be fragmenting, with a free-fall direct order from the PM (by trespassing the judiciary’s mandate), and with a politically-motivated instance the PM is targeting and jailing the most politically active and presumed 'threat' ethnically-Tigrian officials who are assumed to be Egypt's potential setbacks for fulfilling its national interest that is the Nile river.
Finally, the most valuable assets of Tigrians aren't abundance of wealth, state of the art technology or battling experience (the art of war). But, I find out that Tenacity, Unity and Resilience are what have defined Tigrians as a people and which have enabled them to standout strong against unimaginable challenges and threats facing throughout their history. Once again, I am confident enough that TPLF and the people of Tigray will overcome any sort of dangers and plots that could emanate from all sides of the corners pointing toward this people, and emerge as more stronger and unified than ever before.
Berhanu Tsegay is a resident of Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, and a Masters Degree holder in Development Studies. He can be reached at berha2020@Yahoo.com
Silent and well-incentivized foreign-sponsored proxy war has already been tacitly declared on TPLF and the people of Tigray