Re: Your report on 20th of May about
the Ethiopian Embassy,
London and the Gadabursi
We are saddened and disgusted with the posting of a disrespectful comment made by Mohamed Olad, the new communications advisor for Somali regional President Mustafa Omar on Hiiran Online and quoted by its website. No question, the recent meeting between the Ethiopian Ambassador in London and members of the Ethiopian Citizens of the Gadabursi clan in London has touched nerves with some oppressive members of the current state government in the Somali regional State.This blatant attack by Mr. Olad on members of the Gadabursi clan reveals his ignorance, insensitivity and his latent hate for the Gadabursi community at large. This is the second time that Mustafa Mohamed Omer’s official team made such poorly thought of comments about the massacre in Xajiin village and the outright and appropriate response of the victims in Xajiin, the protest by innocent members of the Gadabursi community.
Last week one of Mustafa’s vice ministers told BBC reporter that what happens in Xajiin was infighting between the Gadabursi community, thus negating the apparent lack of respect by the state government and violation of human rights and the public law & order by the government. Such illegal actions by the state government resulted in the loss of lives in Xajiin, unlawful imprisonment of hundreds of innocent people of Gadabursi community, and endangerment of the statehood.
The Gadabursi community everywhere viewed such actions as irresponsible, disdainful, and a lack of concern of these state officials for the livelihood of the community.
This shows nothing less than a lack of leadership, if not outright contempt for the Gadabursi community, as well as how poorly these men are prepared for the office of administration and the responsibility bestowed on them, including protecting the community from harm. Their actions indicated how much they are willing to oppress the freedom of expression and democratic rights of all citizens, especially the Gadabursi clan. All Ethiopians, no matter which name and what family they belong to, have the right to have access to, and communicate with their civil servants and government bodies, which includes all Ambassadors everywhere and the prime minister Abiye Ahmed, too. We are as Ethiopians as much Mr. Olad calls himself, if not more. We are all equal under the Federal Law.
“Injustice anywhere is a threat to justice everywhere. We are caught in an inescapable network of mutuality, tied in a single garment of destiny. Whatever affects one directly, affects all indirectly.” (Martin Luther King, Jr).
We have been observing that there is a dark side the state officials in Somali state revealed when it comes to dealing with our community’s concerns or every time our society tries to assert its rights in the region. The authority unleashes punitive measures to ensure the Gadabursi clan be silenced and remains without rights in the very state they reside. And as such, the Gadabursi will not tolerate humiliation, illegal attacks, and imprisonment by corrupt, Tribalist members of the Somali state authorities, or from any other oppressive leaders.
We don’t hesitate to take quick actions against anyone who attempts to silence our people and dear to deny our rights. The kinds of Cagjar, Olad, and their cohorts have failed the state for so long with their tribal-based lies and attempts to sabotage the Ethiopian government. If you go back to the history of the Somali State, we, the Gadabursi clan, have built it from scratch where you (ONLF) have failed to agree on anything. It was only possible to set up a system in Jigjiga when intellectuals from the Gadabursi clan, such as the Late Abdulmajiid, Professor Bashir Farah Kahiye, and Professor Suleiman Ahmed Guleid, to name a few, have established system equality for citizens in the state.
Where were Cagjar, Olad, and their kind? They were destroying people and the system. That is what they were doing!
We, the Gadabursi community, have envisioned and have set up a system of equality for all, where our people could become a prosperous society. Unfortunately, the groups who inherited such system of coexistence, after our Gadabursi leaders handed them, have done nothing less than the destruction of the fabric of the civil society- replaced it with a failed tribal mentality. We have seen a disaster after disaster: rampant Nepotism; tribalism; land grabbing; poor distribution of resources and imaginary administrations not based on genuine factors. For decades to the present, the Gadabursi clan remained to be the second largest tribe residing in the Somali state, in contrast to the administration’s claims.
Unfortunately, this large population of the Gadabursi clan, who reside on vast and fertile lands remained hard-working community who built the state with their own hands, souls and materials.
Though this community contributed a lot to this great state, including security, Gadabursi clan, nonetheless have received nothing in return from their taxes, nor were they provided with the minimal services they deserved. The violent, unstable and destructive tribal leaders who have illegally grabbed power, have refused to acknowledge the even the census outcome and denied our community the right to have our share of the pie, including recognizing our rights to have a population-based distribution of regions and districts that we should have for our vastly growing population.
These men even lied about reports of the Population-census Bureau. What a shame! For example, there are 120,000 residents in Lafaciise village, 70,000 in Herageel, Jaare, Araabi, Gogti , Sheed Dheer, Dhamal, Gobyar , Armo , Layla-Kal and none of them are getting even a woreda title/district administration. All this is done because those we thought were Somalis have worked against the rights of their fellow Somalis, in this case, Gadabursi and possibly others, to minimize their significance in the region. Such practice is no different than the method that destroyed Somali, clanism and cannibalism. Somalis never learn!
We are grateful that Ethiopia has finally a leadership which strives to empower the society in fairness. Those who are representing at the local level should never dream again to abuse some groups such as the Gadabursi tribe, which is the majority in population numbers, but a minority in regional power-sharing because of their tribal mentality in the leadership of the state.
In Democracy the numbers matter and we will not accept anything less than what we deserve, but rest be assured that if we can’t get as Somalis from the Somali Region, we will not hesitate to take our destiny with other communities as we believe all Ethiopians are equal and share the same flag and nation. That is a promise we will pursue going forward. We have tough choices to make but view this action us as the only tool available for us to earn the respect that citizens deserve. We are Ethiopians!
Comments from all Ethiopian countrymen and women are welcome.
Gadaburisi Diaspora Groups in London