Haacaaluu Hundeessa and Steve Biko, the two young lions of Africa!!
This short piece draws parallels between the lives of two formidable young African activists Haacaaluu Hundeessa of Oromia, Ethiopia and Steve Biko of South Africa. Both Haacaaluu Hundeessa an iconic Oromo music artist and Steve Biko an astute scholar appealed to the conscience of their peoples for freedom. Haacaaluu’s music was a sound track of a revolution that toppled an oppressive regime. He was a formidable human rights activist. He was jailed at the age of 17 for his political activism. He was assassinated at the age of 34 in June 2020.
Steve Biko was a South African anti-apartheid political activist. He was the founder of the Black Consciousness Movement (BCM) the goal of which was liberating the mind of his oppressed people to prepare them for a long march to freedom. Steve Biko strongly beleived that freedom from oppression can never be achieved if the minds of the oppressed are not liberated. Steve Biko’s thought provoking qoute “The most potent weapon of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed” was a brilliant summary of the predicament of resisstance against oppression.
Like Haacaaluu Hundeessa, Steve Biko was arrested several times at a very young age. Like Haacaaluu Hundeessa, Steve Biko was banned from inciting people. He was not allowed to speake to more than one person. He was confined to his province, the Eastern Cape. Steve Biko was expelled from highschool and later a university due to his political activities.
However, like Haacaaluu Hundeessa, Steve Biko was a fearless young activist who regularly defied the orders of the authorities. Like Haacaaluu, Steve Biko knew he was going to die. His another famous quote; “It is better to die for an idea that will live, than live for an idea that will die” was a tantalizing testimony of his determination!!
Steve Biko was killed by apartheid police in September 1977 at the age of just 31. Nevertheless, he did not die in vain. The ideal he died for, freedom for his people was achieved shortly after his death. In April 1994, South Africa eradicated the oppressive apartheid system and embraced democracy. South Africa is a well established democracy in Africa today!!
Haacaaluu Hundeessa and Steve Biko died for an idea that lives. They live on today through the ideas they died for. The dead are those who live for an idea that dies!!
The multinational federalism in jail!! Release them now!! Release all political prisoners!!
Justice for Haacaaluu Hundeessa!! Justice for the Oromo nation!!
Marii Dhimma Qabsoo Bilisummaa Oromoo fi Haala Yeroo Oromoo fi Oromiyaa irratti Qabsaa’aa Oromoo Gameessa, Obbo TEESSOO NAMARRAA waliin taasifame – Kutaa 1ffaa