EDA: STOP AUGUMENTING THE SUFFERING OF THE ERITREAN PEOPLE
I would like to start my writing by congratulating those civic organizations, individual human right activistis, and members of traditional opposition groups for organizing and staging successful demonstration both in New York, Germany, and Sweden.
I would like to start my writing by congratulating those civic organizations, individual human right activistis, and members of traditional opposition groups for organizing and staging successful demonstration both in New York, Germany, and Sweden. The Youth Organizations based in USA have shown to the world that they are bold and courageous enough to confront Dictator Issais and his Monkey Toy (Yemane) and chase them from the streets of New York. We also witnessed the chasing of Yemane monkey with unknown poor lady for blocks in the streets of New York. Good job members of Eritrean Youth for Change (EYC) of the great Bay Area, California. Eritrean youth around the globe are in deed proud of you.
As many people will agree with me, the recent demonstrations were very different from previous ones, both in terms of the make up and numbers of the demonstrators. For the first time in the history of the Eritrean Opposition Groups against PFDJ, Eritrean youth group came out in huge numbers as well as participating in organizing and leading the events. The other thing the youth groups have shown to the world that they can organize any future demonstrations in no time using the social media available to them such as face book and twitter. I also see some resemblance in the mode of operation with the youth groups that led the “Arab-Spring” we witnessed in the Arab world. Thank you our gallant brothers and sisters for making us to see the light at the end of the tunnel. Eritrean dreams and hope have rekindled again because you start leading the real genuine opposition which was hibernated not only through one winter but for decades. It seems that time is on the “Real Opposition” side. Let us keep the momentum going, but be vigilant at the same time. The demise of the Dictator in Asmara is in sight as pressure and isolation is mounting on the regime both from Diaspora Eritreans, European Union, IGAD, USA, and UN. As usual some of the traditional political leaders of the opposition will start “salivating” like a hungry dog to grab power when Issayas and his gangs are removed from power. But it is not going to happen because we will not allow these inept leaders to fool us once again like PFDJ.
After the above mentioned successful demonstrations, the other big milestone in the history of the opposition is the coming National Congress for democratic change which was originally scheduled for October 20011 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia. It is unfortunate that the meeting is postponed by another one month due to sinister calculated demands by few power-mongers of some EDA leaders. I am sure that this situation will create some inconvienience for those who are elected from different parts of the world to participate in the meeting. I strongly believed the demand put foreword by six-members of EDA was purposely devised to thwart the momentum of the oppositions. I tried to glean different information from individuals as well as official announcements from the commission. The EDA request definitely made the commission to succumb. This is my personal suggestion to the Commission: YOU SHOULD HAVE SAID TO THE FEW EDA MEMBERS “GO TO HELL. WE DON’T NEED YOU”. These so called opposition groups both members and non-members of EDA have failed us for so many years to create a strong, united, effective and credible opposition to confront the brutal regime of Issayas Afeworki. They have to show us that they are ready to fundamentally and honestly reform themselves before they even advocate for a regime change in Eritrea. Unless they are ready to do so, they have no place in future Eritrea that will elect its future leaders through elections not through arm-twisting and scary tactics.
The above sad affair is a small setback to the momentum we garnered in the last few months, but at the same time it gives us the opportunity to scrutinize leaders of the traditional political opposition groups both members and non-members of EDA who don’t wish the success of the upcoming historical National Congress (Waella). I will try to enumerate below few of the reasons why:
(I) Status Quo: they love it
If you follow the leaders of the EDA members and non-members, they have been in power leading their organizations with only handful of members for decades. These political opposition groups look big with fancy names on paper but in reality they are like empty huge rooms with scattered few items here and there. Some of the leaders are serving as chairman of their respective mini-organization for over 25+ years. Are they the only competent individuals in their respective parties? Why not they try to recruit young individuals into the leadership? One thing is so obvious with these individuals: most of these them are living comfortably either in western countries or in Ethiopia. God knows how they earn their living. They don’t want to change this status quo. Their way of life right now is the best for them. This is one of reasons that they want to thwart the current momentum to their advantage.
(II) Recognizing Civic and Youth Organizations are more potent their mini- political organizations
The recent demonstrations were organized mostly by Civic and Youth organization. Nobody can refute the potency of these demonstrations. They clearly exposed to the world how brutal the regime we have in our country is. They used appropriate placards as well as clear messages. Who one would not pay attention to the placard that reads: Where is my Father? Where is my son? How about the big, fat rat with Issais’s face in its belly? These are creative slogans by our creative young brothers and sisters. These few extremely powerful messages have contributed at pushing the current momentum against the tyranny in our country foreword. I am sure there are some of the so-called leaders in the traditional political organizations will not like it. This is what I expect from some of the leaders in EDA: bury fatal mines on the path that leads towards the “Waella” which is expected to form Transitional Government of Eritrea in Exile democratically? They will try their best to block Waella from having a successful meeting unless they are assured by the commission positions in this Transitional Government prior to the meeting without election. May be they will try to negotiate power sharing schemes with commission in the coming one month. I hope the commission will not succumb again to such sinister schemes and demands put foreword by these inept leaders.
(III) Lacking Clear Vision
The so-called leaders of the political organization seem to luck clear vision on how to get rid off the dictatorial regime in Eritrea. They have not figured out yet after 25+ years the “Road Map” that transforms us to a peace full and democratic Eritrea. They should not have wasted their time all these years fighting among themselves on trivial issues that are not important to the Eritrean people. They themselves are to be blamed for extending the suffering of our people. One thing that they are really good at is: split and merge, split again and merge-again. About 10 years ago there were less than five political organizations in the USA that splintered from ELF. Currently there are about 30+ organizations and still counting. All these organizations have redundant and boring political programs. Why not they form a single united, stronger, credible, viable, and effective opposition organization instead of keeping their useless tiny organization with no clear vision? It is frustrating to see these tooth-less organization multiplying like genetically modified rats. What a shame? The Eritrean people are requesting the leaders of these organizations to provide them the “Road Map” that removes the dictatorial and brutal regime in Eritrea right now, not tomorrow. People are losing hope and become skeptical on the motives of these impotent leaders in EDA as well as outside EDA. Hitherto they don’t have this “Road Map”. They squandered the golden opportunity bickering and splitting rather than focusing on the removal of the dictatorship in Eritrea for many years. Leaders that have hard time to “Characterize and Define the Regime in Eritrea” also will have to hard time to convince us to elect them to public offices in future Eritrea. Because of this crippling short coming, they will try their best to hijack the momentum these Eritrean Youth that are building in recent months. One way to do this hijacking is to frustrate these youngsters by preventing “Waella” to be successful. These youngsters have invested so much time discussing the important documents forwarded by the commission in many sessions in different parts of the world. On top of these, they were busy participating in different events fighting the PFDG. If you try to stop the upcoming historical meeting in November, Eritrean people will hold you accountable for augmenting their suffering.
I hope the leaders of the six-organizations that demanded the delay of the meeting by one month are paying attention to the frustration of many people like me. You tried your best to lead the opposition for years but failed miserably. The short comings I mentioned above are only few that are hindering you from leading us in the right direction. If we continue to allow you as leaders, we are definitely doomed to fail. I honestly ask you to heed to the demand of the Eritrean people to be genuine leaders or retire gracefully from political leadership. Eritrean people are asking you either to Put up or Shut up. Currently you are becoming a liable rather than an asset in fighting against the PFDJ. Please pass the torch of leadership to the Eritrean Youth who can clearly ‘Characterized the Regime in Eritrea as Brutal Dictatorship that has to be uprooted by all means”. They are ready to fight the regime by all possible means available to them. Give these young Eritreans the courage and the support they deserve rather than trying to kill their fighting spirit.
Lastly, I also admit that the Commission is not a perfect one. Under the circumstance in which the commission created last year, it is doing its best to have a successful Congress. The commission prepared at least some sort of “Road Map” and important documents for discussion. I believe because of the commission’s effort, we are one step forward in our struggle against the regime of Issayas Afeworki. Personally I thank you all members of the commission for serving honestly and tirelessly for one whole year. Good luck with the up coming meeting. If still some groups threaten to boycott the meeting, please allow them to walk out. No more begging.
Tewolde Kibrom, USA