EPRDF thinks of the Ethiopian people as its faithful flock
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EPRDF thinks of the Ethiopian people as its faithful flock

By Samuel Estefanous
Tigrai Online, Jan. 13, 2018


Popular will has always been a formidable weapon. With the right leadership it could indeed raise one of the world’s top five dams ever built on planet earth, guess what?  In one of the world’s poorest countries, as well! Oh, against all the odds and with little or no help from no body and while fighting back mighty nemeses.

With weak leadership it builds a different kind of dam-a pent up fatalistic yet titanic force of destruction. Leadership isn’t about echoing back the chorus of popular discontent. Neither is it stifling it with the rags of ignorance, fear and frustration, something that had eventually brought Dergue to its knee.  Folks know little how the Dergue succumbed to fear at the end of the day. You have only to lay back and quietly observe to realize that it is fear that makes folks talk tough or maybe you could find it said in a beautiful Amarigna in one of Solomon Deresa’s interviews.

The government of EPRDF always plays the humble cute kitty card when it faces mighty opposition it couldn’t quell. You know like that enterprising, manipulative feline in Boots in Shrek-hats in hand and all. But it ain’t gonna work year in and year out. Actually one doesn’t play that kind of card more than once.   

In this regard, history is full of unerring lessons for the asking. Around the time of the Great Depression, there were all sorts of popular upheavals. Some were cleverly quelled, others were brilliantly led. A few were abused and hijacked. The rest is history as pundits love to say. Beware lest our own prefabrication, indecision and hanging easy scapegoats by the halter haunt us later after all, like it has always been said, chickens do come home to roost.

Cutting to the chase .

Body language speaks louder than words, they say, though I find it hard to believe. Fellas, did you closely observe the way the quartet carried themselves at the press briefing?  They were like-look at us, aren’t we cool? We are an egalitarian ensemble, one for all and all for one just like in old Henry Dumas’ Three Musketeers.


Whatever the reason and however the body language is deciphered, the simple fact that EPRDF showed us it four level heads is something to cherish.

1-The Missing Link

Some ten years back the late Solomon Deresa made a very keen observation. He said that to his ‘untrained’ eyes post EPRDF political dialogue is exclusively dominated by and balanced on the hands of the four or three regions that roughly constitute the EPRDF coalition. Since this was way beyond the Front’s kitchen table beer talk, whoever was speaking for the rest of Ethiopians, governors?

2-Duplications of Roles

Fellas, did you notice how much EPRDFites blatantly assume they are the one single arbiter of the fates of 100+million Ethiopians? If you were to analyze everything rationally and legally, the midterm party convention of a political coalition is none of our business, especially considering the fact that we might not have voted it in to office in the first place.

But there is no visible line to demarcate EPRDF the political front- in a presumably multi-party democracy- from the government of the FDRE and they wonder why we-the multitude are so ungratefully belligerent I mean after all, under EPRDF’s watch, we are riding the light rails of Addis, the nationwide asphalt tarmacs are the envy of Africa, the Industrial Parks are watering the mouths of major global brands right?

Let us, see

3-The Benevolent Patriarch  

I choose to give EPRDF the benefit of doubt. I don’t harbor any trace of suspicion that the Front is a scheming and conniving secret society with hidden motives to advance some maniacal private interests.

Otherwise it wouldn’t parade its top leadership before a virtual ‘afersata’ and plead ‘guilty as charged on all counts.

In the timeless classics of 19C Russian philosophical treatises rendered in fiction, an Aesop of a family Patriarch holds a debate as to the existence of a true faithful-   if only somewhere in the Sinai desert- who could order a mountain to crush in to the Sea. When in part the answer comes back positively, the old rake exclaims that was a very Russian thinking, to which even the missing lamb of an agonistic son replies ‘indeed’.

See, what I mean? EPRDF is a typically Ethiopian constitution. It thinks of us as its faithful flock just like its predecessors did beginning from time immemorial.  Take your chance, fellas, and pick a sample group and ask them if they have ever voted and if they have for whom they had cast their vote you would be surprised to discover the magnitude of voting apathy in this country.

4- A Colossal Feet of Clay?

   I was wondering, did EPRDF realize the significance and meaning of the public deposition of guilt it had made on prime time National television?  So all along, there had actually been political prisoners after all, huh? So the entire system of judicial administration had been flawed? I mean countless convictions had been carried on and does it mean we were duped? May God spare us losing faith and trust in the system of Judicial Administration

You know why? I hate to think that this huge interconnected and crossed linked system had been a deceitful mirage that depicts a false network of blue expanse of oasis in the parched dry desert expanse.

Yet there is more than enough will to make redeeming recourses. That is my enduring impressions from the press briefings.  Question is-how strong is this will to do well at any or all cost, in the words of Lemma Megressa? 

5-We’d Messed it up big time

Say what you gotta say but when the ultimate big quartet humbly presents themselves before the multitude and say what they said, it is like a good omen. You see, Emperor Theodros did something like that in the middle of one of his endless expeditions frustrated that every single noble endeavor he was working on was being resisted and was hitting a dead end, and seeing that his laying the whole Nation waste didn’t do any good he prostrated himself before the public and pleaded ‘ for Christ’s sake forgive me!’ That is the true mark of the ultimate hero.

But this is now and that was then if you had messed it up this big, do you have the courage and residual stamina to stay afloat at the helm, we are kinda wondering

6-Popular Will is indeed an Indomitable Might

At the end of the day, the only constant is the people. To try to go against it is like trying to swim upstream- against the current. And may God spare us the specter of anarchy you know why? ‘cos we, the people, the common dust folks, are the ultimate sacrifices in the even total breakdown of government kicks in. The nouveau riche and their pampered kids have a secured future somewhere far, warm and glittery.

Recently I had read two diametrically opposite fates of two Syrian families. The one featured a week ago is about this politico rich family who had fled to Malta and bought the host Nation’s passport for a ransom price and became-instant Maltese the familiar sad story is the one I read today about a family who had stayed and had to raise two little girls disfigured by shell explosion.

So whatever we do, let us not cease to prosecute the noble causes of PEACE. 

7-God Bless and Happy Epiphany

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