Saturday, 23 June 2007

Loyalty and trust are truly the glue that holds Kinijit together

Meles Zenawi’s systematic murder, extermination, torture, forcible re-settlement, confinement, forced labour, destruction of homes and widespread systematic attack of the public is a crime against humanity. Among the many factors that have been conducive to human rights abuses since 1991 are the lack of independent judicial system. Sixteen years have passed since Meles Zenawi’s crimes against humanity began and yet he has not been held accountable. Party affiliated judges have unbridled power, local TPLF officials use their position to achieve personal gain, conduct vendettas and law enforcement TPLF authorities abuse their power by, for instance, inflicting torture on any individual they dislike.

Absence of justice and independent authority is conductive to widespread mass arbitrary arrest, detention, torture and executions while at the same time denying victims of human rights violations recourse to impartial tribunals whereby they could challenge their detention and present a defence in the course of a fair and pubic trial. All too often, without any trials or following summary trials, death sentences are imposed and swiftly carried out, particularly on peaceful Oromo speaking Ethiopians. The frequently arbitrary nature of the Meles’ administration, so-called federal government permits, among other things, the summary execution of prisoners previously sentenced to imprisonment without the chance of having further judicial hearings, and results in vastly disparate sentences being handed down in different parts of the country.

While I was under detention both at Ma’ekalwi and Kaliti, I used to hear several horror stories of deaths as a result of torture where the body was never returned to the family for burial. There were many cases in which prisoners were released with severe physical injuries after having been severely tortured and died some days later as a consequence. Frequently, torture victims have been denied adequate medical treatment. As in the case of Dr Berhanu Nega, Professor Mesfin Wolde Mariam and Eng. Hailu Shawel, access to specialized medical treatment including hospital treatment has been denied or delayed for long periods.

How would you react if you see a middle-aged man, a father of some beautiful children, a beloved husband and once a respected person in your neighbourhood bound his wrists, pushed violently from one guard to another, being punched, kicked, and beaten indiscriminately all over his body? This is one of the many scenarios of what happened to Kinijit leaders.

Several prisoners, including some of those already released, have untreated wounds – endured torture – becoming septic and malodorous through lack of medical attention and poor hygiene. In Kaliti, the psychological suffering is the worst -humiliation and self-disgust. Sometimes, the anxiety and fear rise when hearing the screams of other prisoners being tortured and being kept ignorant of their fate. Some Kinijit prisoners have experienced feelings of insecurity and vulnerability aggravated by dark solitary confinement and blindfolding for long periods. Kaliti’s extremely poor hygiene and insufficient sanitary facilities, compounded by severe overcrowding, have encouraged the spread of skin disease, scabies and lice. These are the conditions under which our leaders have been living in since they were arrested in October-November 2005.

Regardless of these horrible conditions, our leaders in Kaliti prison never asked for mercy. They were approached by Meles Zenawi who is terribly worried about his already poor reputation, lack of donors’ money and increasing the isolation from the international community. As a result, he has abandoned his harsh and stubborn conditions of previous negotiations and he is in desperate need for face saving. Our leaders know the limits of dictatorship but Meles doesn’t know the limits of their endurance. Now he has given up. He has made a call for final negotiation which the prisoners have repeatedly rejected and re-negotiated.

Whatever outcomes of any negotiation, it is not done out fear of death penalty or long imprisonment. Our leaders know what is best for the democratization, peace and stability of Ethiopia, and most of all, they know what has to be done to maintain the unity of Kinijit. I know all Kinijit leaders personally because I have been privileged to work with them. I know their determination, endurance and loyalty to the Ethiopian people. It is the right time to show respect and loyalty to them. Strongly committed we should accept whatever decision they make on half of the millions that have voted for them.

Young Ethiopians have played a prominent role and some even have given their lives in the movements for peace and justice under Kinijit party. We need to support students and young workers - the two major forces in the broad alliance that is needed to deal a decisive blow to the backward ethnic politics of the current TPLF political leaders. Ethiopians at home and abroad will be standing behind their leaders united and they will keep their loyalty until the fight against TPLF dictatorship is won.


Anonymous said...

Dear Seble,

Thank you very much for being U. You should be very proud of yourself. We are. Ehiopia is very lucky to have such a wonderful person who stood unwaveringly for the well being of our people.

Seble, hard to express our admiration. Igizer Yimsgen. Ethiopia has so many 'Tayitu's',

My appreciation to you, especially expressing your views and suggesting how we should act and your call for civil obedience proved it how determined and strong you are.

Keep up the good job my sister. Ethiopia will be free from this inhumane people. Iniberta. God Bless You. We pray for your well being, for our leaders and for all those who are suffering in TPLF jails all over the country.

God Bless You.
Stay safe..

Amanuel said...

Dear Seble,

many thanks !!!

I fully respect and support the decision of the political prisoners with all my heart.

God bless you dear Sebli

Londoner said...

I agree with your assessment. Kinijit leaders in prison have been tested, pushed to the limit and they have stayed the course. Yes, all those who claim to be supporters of these visionary leaders at home and abroad, - now is the time to steadfast, and brace ourselves for what may be the beginning of the end. The end to tyranny, oppression and TPLF’s chauvinistic ethnic politics. I have a feeling the road to the end is going to have lots of bumps and holes. It is going to be very difficult - in the strongest sense of the word! We need to endure the path – the destinations are hope, better tomorrow, and the beginning to building democracy – for ALL.

May God give us ALL - the heart, the vision, and tolerance, to get us out of the quagmire. Amen!!

Anonymous said...

Thank you Seble. We have to trust our leaders. I know Gash Hailu and the rest will do the best for Ethiopia and not necessarily for themselves.
I have confirmed that there are no preconditions.

God Bless and hope you can return home soon


Anonymous said...

God bless you Seble. This is what is all about the spirit of KINIJIT. Please do your best in joining the fierce struggle, getting our leaders out of jail as much as you could. Do whatever is fair for your consciousness, as you are free now, you better show your sharpness to a regime which kept you in darkness for months, and indeed fight in triple to see the faces of those heros which once were next to you in KINIJIT offices in Addis.

Anonymous said...


God Bless You. Can i repeat my words from last time, we are witnessing this generation's Tayitus are flourshing. Great Job.

I am really glad you mentioned our sisters suffering in Middle East. Yes, we need to do something about it. They are crying day night. Some lost their lives already and at least we have to save those who are crying to be free...
We should try anything socially, politically and legally by using international law we have to tell to the whole world the meles and his cadres are making big money by selling our sisters. This human traficking is illegal, criminal and immoral. We have to act now.

Thank you very much, seble dear.