CALL ME BY MY NAME: A small talk with Debteraw, VII

Wolde Tewolde alias Obo Arada Shaw

April 5, 2007

 The Crocodile is dead,
The Animal is imprisoned
The Oak is burning
Let EPRP start rolling
To arrest TPLF & Shaebia from stonewalling 

Will The Real EPRP leaders and members, stand up, please!

 Last week, Debteraw’s Website displayed three items of concern to all EPRP members and supporters. The picture of real Debteraw himself dressed in academic gown in Ethiopian “learned” fashion and as a peasant fighter. In the middle of the Website, an invitation by ASSIMBA.ORG for Pal talks discussions. The discussants were leaders such as Eyasu Alemayehu (Revolutionary/writer), Fassika Bellette (Leader/Economist), Ghenet Girma (Female leader), Asnake (colonel) and Aselefecth (Revolutionary Mother). On the third column, two ex-leaders of EPRP but returnee ready to discuss issues of the past and present.

Also an article on Debteraw’s continuous struggle plus a book of Hama Tuma narrating the African cannibalism of Democracy was posted on the same page.

What a wonderful scene and coincidence.

“ The EPRP was a clandestine organization where the identity of the members, including the leadership, was little known to the public. Very little is known about their history and how they operated, let alone outsiders, very few of the members knew or cared to know about the leadership, contrasting to the Ethiopian cultural setting where the leader is considered an important figure.”  (The Generation: Kiflu Tadesse p.2) 

EPRP was and is not a secretive organization though for tactical reasons, some of its leaders and members were working clandestinely for fear of retribution. But Most are open with the public and with their Party’s agenda. The writer knows the crocodile group but he would have done disservice to the Animal group if he did not tell their stories that sacrificed their lives, their properties, their careers and everything including their families in order to respond to Debteraw’s vision and mission.

Now that every individual, organization or political party is coming out in the open, it is time to call me by my name. What is my name? 35 years ago, April 1972 (Miazia 1964) a new political party of its kind headed by the crocodile Group was formed in underground; 32 years ago, August 11, 1975 (Nhassie 5, 1967), the clandestine EPRP, headed by the Animal Groups came out in the open to lead the struggle of the Eway Revolution. 33 years ago, February 1974 (Yekatit 1966), the rule of the Monarchy was terminated. 40 years ago September 1967, I met Debteraw who encouraged me to fight for freedom of speech, expression and assembly (SEA).

I have 3 more years (2010) to touch and speak to Debteraw in person. Why celebrate when we cannot even call him by his name? A number by itself has no meaning unless it is related to an object. 32 years, 33 years, 35 years 40 years or even 2000 years have no validity if we do not relate to EPRP as a real political Party that played a major role in the lives of a self-less youth Generation who followed the path of Christ.

As for me, the Eway Revolution is the one I am interested in. We should not gloat over, let historians explore the question who was right. EPRP is not the one who brought about the current situation in Ethiopia or Eritrea, but we do want to pitch in to bring about a resolution of the bad situation. As far as EPRP is concerned, it can afford to tell the truth and suggest specific viable alternatives, which to our mind will pave the way for cooperation. But first, EPRP has to have a project for the fallen comrade’s feeling and to those who have been held incommunicado. But what about the living comrades feeling? History should be interpreted not told and retold.

EPRP has nothing to be ashamed of. Unbiased image rather than about improving its image is the task at hand. When EPRP put its cards on the table, about why and how, it does business with United Democratic Front, Coalition Forces, OLF, or any force for that matter, people have no problems with any of that. I see nothing wrong in having our lives and actions covered with a pinch of salt, our natural talent and history. What can be done? Just call me by my name!!! Just use visual, Internet and print (VIP) and say more and more frankly what, why and how EPRP as a whole did it to bring the fundamental change in Ethiopia and Eritrea.

Celebrating for unhappiness and celebrating for happiness are totally different things.  In politics as in business, the way to create enduring advantage is not by beating the competition at its game but changing the nature of the game. The real key to success is self-discipline. The current leadership of EPRP has it all as far as discipline but not the initiative to invest time with people instead of spending time with people. Their calendar should be filled by priorities not to fill the calendar by request. As to the members, the opposite is true, they seem to have lost the self-discipline and they spend their time in living day-to-day reacting to current situations.

Many spoke and wrote about EPRP. But the majority described EPRP what it is not instead of what it is. The Why and How questions distinguish EPRP from other individuals, organizations and civic communities.

EPRP’s five tasks:

  • To teach, educate and persuade

  • To assist in organizing various associations
  • To arm in self defense
  • To plan and manage its resources
  • To lead and be lead


For Criticism and comments:

Published in: on April 6, 2007 at 6:05 pm  Comments (5)  

Opperessed silently or stand up for your right! (Amharic poem from Ingida Tadesse)

Published in: on April 6, 2007 at 3:13 pm  Leave a Comment