We are deeply disturbed by recent reports from the Guji Zone of Oromia. Our sources have confirmed over 150 Shakisho High School students have been arrested by the Ethiopian Federal Police. Although, we are working to populate the names of every individual arrested due to lack of information by local authorities we will continue to investigate. According to the Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa (HRLHA) based in Ontario, Canada as well as sources close to Adola Town we have learned many of the students sustained injuries from beatings by law enforcement.
The arrests were a result of recent clash between ethnic Amhara and Oromo students. The confrontation occurred in retaliation by ethnic Amhara students who were dismayed by the ethnic Oromo students who proceeded to sing the regional anthem in Oromiffa (Oromo Language) during a recent flag raising ceremony. Although, such clashes are not rare in the region or in Ethiopia at large, what deeply concerns us is the level of involvement by authorities.
This is a local issue that involves a group of minors from two ethnic groups and authority’s quick and aggressive action to clamp down on the clash by arresting only the ethnic Oromo students is deeply troublesome. Rather than mediating between the two ethnic groups the Federal Police escalated the issue further by arresting only the ethnic Oromo students. According to our sources the only crime the Oromo students committed was singing the regional anthem in their language which is part of the Oromia region. Thus, these students committed no crime nor were involved in any wrongdoing which brings us back to our initial question, why was the Federal Police involved?
Furthermore, basic understanding of law enforcement dictates that their priority should be to settle differences between the two groups through mediation of the situation rather than further escalating the matter. As our source who asked to remain anonymous for fear of retaliation stated, “the fact law enforcement were involved in a local issue and were arresting only one ethnic group goes to show how far our civil liberty is being respected by authorities.” To add insult to injury according to Human Rights League of the Horn of Africa, “the ethnic Oromo Students, who were the victims of the clash, were indiscriminately double-victimized [through arrest and detention] while those who triggered the violence [ethnic Amhara’s] were left unquestioned.” We find this level of complete disregard for due process and lack of fairness by authorities completely disturbing. As we continue to further investigate this matter we ask our visitors to remain vigilant and most importantly press for the unconditional release of all the juveniles.
** Please be advised the image used is not directly connected to this incident. And, due to remoteness of the location and lack of reliable internet connection we are unable to obtain an image from our sources at this time.
We are deeply saddened to report the beloved artist Almaz Tefera has passed away. She passed away on March 22, 2014 at the Police Referral Hospital in Finfinne. A pioneer among Oromo artists, Almaz Tefera was one of the founding members of Afraan Qalloo. Born in 1957 in Western Hararghe, Doba District she began her singing career early at the age of 16.
She was a member of the Harar Police band in the early 1970’s where she began her career as a singer. Upon releasing her first solo album in 1983 she was released from the police force for breach of contract, which explicitly banned the release of solo albums. However, her relations with the police force were not completely severed as she returned several times and was subsequently released for a range of issues including discrimination.
What makes Almaz Tefera a pioneer among Oromo singers is her love for the Oromo culture and ability to communicate messages of socio-political affair, poverty, illiteracy, as well as her own life struggles through her music. Her music transcended the often contentious political struggle of Oromo’s and shinned light on everyday issues like poverty and illiteracy. She collaborated with other prominent singers including Worku Bilika, Halo Dawe, Adam Harun, Kadir Said, Ali Shabo, and Musa Turki,
She released her final album in 2005. And, in 2009 she fell ill and was diagnosed with blood cancer. She lost her battle with cancer on the 22nd of March, 2014 at the age of 57. Oromo’s around the world are mourning her passing with a heavy heart. She leaves behind two children and a legacy of music that includes ten albums which many will enjoy for generations to come.
Dr. Salahadin Said statement about Dr. Abdulsamad Mohammed
Oromotv.com would like to share his thought about this great influential man of Qubee Generation of our time.
“We, the Qubee Generation are bound to acknowledge our great indebtedness to Dr.Abdulsamad Mohammed for his contribution of Afaan Oromo development and advancement. His first book, Seerluuga Afaan Oromo, in my opinion, played a pronounced role in revolutionizing mainstream Afaan Oromo curriculum by introducing virtually standardized Afaan Oromo grammar for first time. I remeber we used to use his book in high school both as Afaan Oromo text and reference. When Afaan Oromo introduced in Oromia school curriculum for the first time, reference books were scarce and teachers had recourse only to Dr.Mohammed’s work as a primary reference. His deep knowledge of Afaan Oromo syntax make him unique scholar that we can still resort to as a resource when we get stuck in our writing of Afaan Oromo sometimes.
One of Dr.Mohammed’s brother, late Abdi Qoophee whose name mentioned briefly in this discussion was also unsung hero of Oromo. Abdi Qoophee’s contribution to Afaan Oromo litrature and art are beyond measure. I hope Oromia Media Network would bring to light contribution and achievement of Abdi Qoophee in their future program.
OMN deserves great gratitude for presenting a renowned Oromo Scholar of our time Dr.Abdulsamad Mohammed and having him share his experience with us. Most of us, if not all, who live in western countries are very deficient in Afaan Oromo grammar. It is my hope and wish that Dr.Mohammed would have a program on OMN and help us improve our Afaan Oromo writing and grammar skill. Otherwise. we become, goowwaa bakka itti bade warra seehuu”
This is courtesy of Dr. Salahadin Said.
OromoTV.com would like to thanks Dr. Salahadin for allowing us to share his thought with this video!
CONQUEST OF RESISTANCE IN THE ETHIOPIAN EMPIRE (1880 – 1974)
THE FIRST OF ITS KIND IN TELLING THE FACTS ABOUT OROMO STRUGGLE.
By Abbas H. Gnamo, University of Toronto
This work examines the philosophical origins of Oromo egalitarian and democratic thoughts and practice, the Gadaa-Qaalluu system, kinship organization, the introduction and spread of Islam and the consequent socio-cultural change. It sheds light on the advent of the Ethiopian empire under Menelik II, its conquests and Arsi Oromo fierce resistance (1880-1900), the nature and legacy of Ethiopian imperial polity, centre-periphery relations, feudal political economy and its impacts on the newly conquered regions with a focus on Arsi Oromo country. The book also analyzes the root causes of the national political crisis including, but not limited to, the attempts at transforming the empire-state to a nation-state around a single culture, contested definition of national identity and state legitimacy, grievance narratives, uprisings, the birth and development of competing nationalisms as well as the limitations of the current ethnic federalism to address the national question in Ethiopia. Dr.