Personal experience when visiting Oromia Cultural Center in Finfinnee!

Personal Experience when visiting Oromia Cultural Center in Finfinnee!

I was happy that I was able to go back to my beautiful, native country Oromia/Ethiopia!
The trip was pleasant and comfortable, luckily I was sitting beside the Eritrean man on the plane. We were chatting about both countries and he did not know much about Ethiopia, but he has heard a lot about it and he would like to visit it one day.

My trip to Oromia/Ethiopia

I am so blessed and lucky to find see my sisters, brothers, their children and some old friends in my beloved Oromia. Living for a quiet long in a foreign countries, I had a privilege to visit many countries around the world, but I had always my country in mind. I liked and still like so much of the countryside life,  I think it is because of I was born and grew up there, as many Oromo children did, who grew up in the countryside taking care of domestic animals.

Although this picture was taken in a foreign country, Sitting under this tree reminds me of  Qilxuu in afaan Oromo or warka in Amharic (a wild fig plant found in Ethiopia and Yemn) according to Wikipedia or ficus vasta ( in English).

In some areas it looks like Odaa tree. Where I grew up there was no Odaa tree, but we had abundant amount of Qilxuu trees.

Back to Finfinnee/Oromia 

Remembering some of the names in Finfinnee : Maqaa gannamaa iddoowwaan Finfinne keessaattii Oromoo ittiin waamaa turee, While we were touring the City!

Remembering some of the names in Finfinnee : Maqaa gannamaa iddoowwaan Finfinne keessaattii Oromoo ittiin waamaa turee

Upon my arrival, I was eager to visit the Oromia Cultural Center located at Laga harree (Laga haar) in Finfinnee

From the start it was not a good day to visit the center, Because there was a meeting at the center’s theaters. We insisted anyway to visit the center, but we had an issue upon entry. Even though the security guards were so busy taking care of everything, they were still so kind to us, and I thank them for that. Once we passed through the security, we walked towards the main entrance. Two men approached us to ask us to pay for entrance fee and we did. We asked for a tourist guide at the door and got that they have one, and no one showed up. So, we insisted for guided again and after some discussions we were assigned to a lady to show us around. As soon as we started the tour, the guide looked unhappy with her role. She started walking fast without answering our questions. First of all, she was not good in Afaan Oromo let alone understanding the culture. According to their own description Oromo culture center built with over 300 million Biirr has been inaugurated and open for research on Oromo language, culture and art. .

To make things worse, when I asked the guide about this artefact: on this left side picture, the guide told me it was Buddena (Biddena)! But I knew she did not know what she was doing. She wondered what kind of person I was (in Amharic). If you cannot speak Afaan Oromo how could you explain the Oromo cultural? She replied that she is learning, I told her but this is not a school why don’t you learn first and then come back to work?

While we were exchanging words with the guide, some foreign tourists came in, who expected explanation the objects in English. However, the guide was explaining for them about exhibition in broken Afaan Oromo, not in English. The foreign tourists ignored her and left the place as quickly as they could.

Another Observation

Inside the compound it looks nice but there is no water for the rest rooms. The smell coming from the place was not pleasant either.

Outside but in the compounds land there were some plants and monuments. From all of it what caught my attention was the fake Odaa tree!

I thought it was natural, but it wasn’t. I could not understand why it couldn’t be a real tree? Oromia including Finfinnee is a fertile land that can grow anything!! Among others, the strangest thing is that under the artificial tree there is Coqorsa (eleusine jaeger) to make it like Irreechaa. I couldn’t have my picture under the Odaa tree. Instead I have one under this small (see below picture) that looks like Rose flower.

I hope next time everything will be corrected !

Thank you for all my family who helped me to make happen this wonderful tour after so many years in foreign country.

What I found out is I still love my country so much after being away from it for so long. My future dream is to go back for good to live there with my beloved relatives and family in peace and harmony. God bless Oromia / Ethiopia and all its people.










  1. I read this story of visiting mother land Oromia with interest. My daughter, or may be I call you my younger sister, thank you for writting this story of visiting Oromia.

    -Qilxu in English is called “ficus vasta”
    -Coqorsa in English is called “eleusine jaeger”
    -Odaa, danbii, madaallee, ejersa, in English are called “sycamore”
    These names are scientific names, since these tropical trees have no natural english names.


  2. Thank you for sharing your observation of the Oromia Cultural Centre in Finfinne. I hope that the management of the centre would take note of your positive comments and make the necessarry improvements among their well intended priorities. Since the centre is relatively new they may not have fully grown sycamore trees, however, planting new trees and replacing the faux ones may be possible (for the future). Equally, it is essential to invest in staff development,particularly, frontline staff (employees who have direct contact with visitors) must receive thorough training and have sound knowledge of Oromo culture.

    Thanks to the Oromian Bateleur too for providing names of the trees in another language and suggesting that scientific names could have been used to explain the trees found in the centre.

    Those of us yearning to visit motherland at some points, obviously, are eager to present ourselves at the Oromia Cultural Centre and see Oromia in one place firsthand. This is true for foreign tourists who have intentions to learn about and understand the Oromo people and their culture. The management of the centre and Oromia state government must aspire to make the centre’s standard as high as possible. In case there is shortage of funding they may be able to organize fundraising events and appeal to the great Oromo people and friends of the Oromo people in order to overcome the constraints. Oromo scholars, could you please help the centre by providing ideas and expertise to upgrade the standard of the cultural centre so that it measures up to the height of the great Oromo people? The great Oromo people have overcome century of attempts by enemies to destroy their culture and belittle them, and are destined for brighter future. Therefore, anything that represents the Oromo must attest to their greatness. There is nothing ordinary about this great nation!


  3. Dear Kichuu-admin and Olana Abbalichie, at first place, I do beg you cap in hand for forgiveness, that I am not educating you, rather sharing some names of Oromian trees and plants which are difficult to find in dictionaries. I believe sharing what we know together will strength our Oromummaa and Tokkummaa. Therefore, if you don’t mind I would like to give you some names of Oromian trees and plants. So, if you already know them, you can forget them. Otherwise one can use it at anytime, when it is necessary.

    The scientific names of Oromian trees and plants are as follows:
    -Sizygium guineense = baddeesaa fi goosuu
    -Croton macrostachyus = makkaniisa
    -Vernonia amygdalina = eebicha
    -Rhamnus prinoides = geeshee/geeshoo
    -Carissa spinarum = agamsa
    -Cordia Africana = waddeesa
    -Solanum incanum = hiddii
    -Thorn apple = asaangira
    -Phytolaca dodecandra = handoodee
    -Albuca Abyssinica (why not Oromica ?)= qorsa bofaa (100% effective against venom).
    -Rumex nervosus = dhanqaggoo
    -Olea Africana = ejersa
    -Entandrophragma excelsum = qararoo
    -Jacaranda = botoro0
    -Acacia = laaftoo
    -Castor = qobboo
    -Rue = cilaaddamii
    -Hagena Abyssinica (why not Oromica ?) = hanquu (muka koosoo)
    -Finger millet = daagujjaa/saagujjaa

    Galatoomaa jiraadhaa

    • Dear Oromian Bateleur and Olana Abbalichie,
      Thank you very much for your educative suggestions. The intention of this article is to draw attention from Oromo to advocate for the improvement of the Oromia Cultural Center to reflect the greatness of the Oromo people. It is of paramount era to demonstrate what we have in common as a people (our trees, plants, grasses, artefacts, domestic and wild animals, landscapes, food, language, etc.). We encourage you to take an initiative to work on writing articles about this interesting topic.

      Kichuu Admin.

  4. Thanks a lot Kichuu_admin and Oromian Bateleur once again for dedicating your time to the service of the great Oromo people and for sharing your invaluable knowledge respectively.

    Kichuu, you are providing great service to your people under, probably, selfless sacrifice; and your contribution is greatly valued and admired by your people. ‘History writes historians as much as historians write history. The presuppositions of an age, the shadows it lives under, the light it thinks it grows towards: all inform how it narrates its past’. Indeed, what we do today and leave behind will underpin the future of our people and you are doing well, making positive contribution to our common good. Certainly, you are an inspirational and qeerroo and qaree will follow in your foot steps (writing, and documenting more), and the great Oromo people will have their ups and downs as well as grestness recorded and preserved. Keep it up!

    Oromian Bateleur, hats off to you for generously parting with your knowledge and educating us about the trees and plants motherland, Oromia, is endowed with. It is comforting to have as many of our people who are documenting information and contributing to our wealth of knowledge. This is a good example for the rest of us to come out of our comfort zones and record information about the immense wealth of orally passed down knowledge and wisdoms of our people, and share with the young generation as well as future generations. While we appreciate and admire our scholars who have been trying to write and leave behind documented knowledge about our people and their place in history, there is still huge gap to fill the century and half efforts by enemies to erase anything Oromo. We need every piece of knowledge to be documented and added. Particularly, those who are nearing the grace of long lives need to record their knowledge and leave behind in order to help the new generations to complete the jigsaws of missing knowledge. Writing information and oral knowledge, even if it is on pieces of cardboards, is more significant than keeping it in our head. Future generations will benefit from documented and preserved knowledge. Similarly, qeerroo and qaree (the qubee generation,) are expected to write a lot and ascertain that they are the writers of their own history in addition to seeing their struggle for the just cause of the Oromo people, greater freedoms and abbabiyuumma, to fruition.

    Back to the Oromia Cultural Centre, the management of the centre, Oromia state government, Oromo scholars, Oromo businesses, the great Oromo people and their friends must work together and bring the place which represents Oromo culture and landmarks to higher standard. We must overcome modesty and believe in the greatness of our people and the immense wealth and potential our constituency presents us. We need to aspire for greatness that is backed by our great people, which will be fulfilling and eternal greatness.

    Last but not least, the people who came up with the idea of establishing Oromia Cultural Centre and those who have done everything they could to get it up and running deserve our appreciation and gratitude. They have started with good intention, and it is absolutely possible to make it of high standard.

    Best wishes

  5. Dear Kichuu-Admin. and Olanaa Abbalichie, we came to being and live involuntarily and someday we will pass away and perish involuntarily leaving all behind. But what is very good and interesting is that mother Oromia/society will never die so long the planet earth exists. So, let us not pass away with our knowledges, whether it is less or more.

    So, I have something to contribute, specially in Afaan Oromoo:

    -The proof that Afaan Oromoo is richer and self-reliance than Amharic
    -Oromo idioms, which non-Oromos and urban-born Oromos cannot understand
    -Names of social science and natural science in Afaan Oromoo
    -And a few names of Oromian animals and plants, which are sometimes difficult to find

    But I don’t know how to post it, since I am too old and lacking pc knowledge, except writting comments like this one and using my e-mail.

    Can any one of you, Kichuu-Admin. or Olanaa Abbalichie facilitate it for me ?

    Galati haa dursu

    BTM from central Europe in non-English speaking country.

  6. Dear Oromian Bateleur,

    You are honourable and exceptionally generous. There you go; kichu_admin have extended their assistance to post your work. Try to get to them as soon as possible.

    Many thanks kichu_admin for assisting Oromian Bateleur to pass on their knowledge and preserve them for the next generation.

    Best wishes

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