Sidama Globally Marks the 16th Anniversary of Looqqe Massacre Whilst Commemorating All Victims of the Last 27 Years in Ethiopia.
By Denboba Natie, May 28, 2018
The Sidama nation globally marks the 16th Commemorative Anniversary of Sidama Looqqe massacre of May 24, 2002’s hundreds of civilians between May 24 and 26th 2018 both in Sidamaland and Diaspora. The commemoration in Sidama has been marked with renewed sense of determination and vigour in fighting to achieve the cause for which 100s of Sidama civilians were gunned down at the Looqqe village of the outskirt of Hawassa, in broad day light by the TPLF/EPRDF’s security and national forces 16 years ago. Currently, the Sidama people under the leadership of ‘Ejjeetto’ are intensifying the struggle for freedom and self-respect denied to the nation thus far by the regime in power. Furthermore, the Ejjeetto also visited in Sidamaland some of the families of Looqqe massacre victims after collecting donations in support of the indicated families who were left with no support after their loved ones were unlawfully massacred by the TPLF’s killing machines on the indicated date.
On the indicated occasion of the 16th Sidama commemorating anniversary on May 26 2018 London Conference in particular, the victims of all the 84 nations and peoples of Ethiopia who were massacred, assassinated, arrested, tortured and dehumanised by the TPLF/EPRDF’s barbaric regime for the last 27 years has been equally marked with sense of fraternity and sombre feeling by lighting ‘84’ candles in the honour of thousands of the scarified. Such all-inclusive commemoration has been initiated by the leadership of the Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF) and agreed by the Peoples’ Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (PAFD) and post February 24/25 2018 all-inclusive London Conferences, ‘Ethiopian Political Organisations Coordinating Committee’ (EPOCC). The representatives of all political organisations, civic groups and human rights organisations have attended the conference in the heart of the city of London where all participants vowed to work together for freedom, democracy, justice and equality of all peoples in Ethiopia. The participants further vowed to hold into account; those who are responsible for the Sidama and the rest people’s massacre in Ethiopia are brought to an independent justice.
Therefore, the scope of London’s May 26, 2018 conference became a country wide for the first time since the TPLF assumed power in mid-1991 and subsequently embarked on the projects of committing massacre after massacre, mass-murder, genocides, unlawful incarcerations of civilians, targeted assassinations of politicians and their supporters, exploitation of resources of the entire country. The objectives of calibrating the conference toward the indicated direction is twofold: the first is symbolising unity in differences thereby inviting such uniting and uplifting calls to all stakeholders in Ethiopia; and secondly bringing the plights of all the 84 nations who have been equally became the subjects of TPLF/EPRDF’s state-terrorism in the past 27 years reign of barbarism to the light of all peoples in Ethiopia and wider global community.
After warmly welcoming and introducing the theme of the day by emphasising the uniting denominator for all victims that brings us together to commemorate all on the occasion of the 16th commemorative anniversary of the Sidama Looqqe massacre, Mr Denboba Natie has invited the Chair of SNLF, Mr Betana Hoxesso (Hotesso) to formally welcome participants, and further highlight about the Sidama Looqqe massacre in addition to officially opening the commemorating conference. Subsequently, Mr Hoxesso narrated how the Sidama Looqqe massacre has unfolded. He has reiterated that, unlike in any part of the country, the Sidama’s Looqqe massacre has been meticulously planned, debated upon and recorded in minutes before finally deciding the action with 85% vote in support of Sidama mass-murder but 15% under the leadership of Federal, Regional and Sidama Zone high level TPLF/EPRDF’s officials such as Mr Berket Simeon, Mr Hailemariam Desalegn, General Abadula Gamada (Minase), Mr Shiferaw Shigute and the other 17 criminal cadres. The Sidama civilians, whose fate has been prejudged by the indicated legally organised TPLF/EPRDF’s mafias, were about to stage on a peaceful demonstration of the regime’s repeated rejection of their constitutionally guaranteed rights to regional self-administration that remains to date relevant. As Mr Hoxesso rightly puts it, following the Sidama massacre of May 24, 2002, tens of thousands of further Sidama civilians were unlawfully arrested and tortured, the entire Sidama has been fully militarised where its people terrorised, girls and women were raped.
From the time of Sidama Looqqe massacre, the regime continually displaces the Sidama’s legitimate owners from their land in Hawassa and its environs and subsequently partitions it like a piece of cake between the TPLF’s Generals, their regional and Sidama zone cadres by leaving the Sidama people destitute under abject poverty and substandard living conditions. Following Mr Hoxesso’s opening remark, Mr Natie invited three participants, one of which was a female to light ‘84’ candles to commemorate all victims in Ethiopia including those who have no one to talk about them with real sense of sorrow and sadness as participants deeply empathise the anguish of those who have been killed and left behind all over the country for the last 27 years TPLF/EPRDF’s reign of State-terrorism. The conference also remembered those who have been dehumanised and killed in various parts of the world including hundreds of girls in Middle-East, Sahara desert and Mediterranean Sea after being pushed out of the country by the very regime that massacres all within the country, seeking better life denied to them in their country by their own government.
A comprehensive and highly researched country-wide presentation on the scope and magnitude of human rights violations, massacres, assassinations and mass murders by the incumbent regime was made by Dr Achame Shana of Shakacho on behalf of EPOCC. The indicated presentation and various regionally based case study presentations such as the Oromo massacre on Irreecha of 2016, the Ogaden Somali’s persistent massacre and genocide, the Gambella massacre, Afar’s on-going massacre, the Amhara and Konso massacres and various nationwide massacres has evoked mixed feelings including a horrifying memory of these actions and tortures and dehumanising treatments of the subjects by the regime in power initiated debates and recommendations for the future direction of multi-national Ethiopia. Following the indicated and the other various regions’ presentations, the participants actively engaged in question and open discussions and recommendations.
After entertaining the debates and discussions of all angels about the future direction of Ethiopia, besides all agreed to put their difference aside whilst working together to address the on-going malice of the country so that the final verdict will be left for the stakeholders in the likelihood of upcoming free and fair Ethiopia for all. Following the discussions of all participants, in particular, the OLF’s veteran Obbo Xaha Abdi earnestly advised the participants to critically think and understand the unequivocal fact that, for a country of various nations like Ethiopia, the best and only solution will be genuine and workable federal systems where the various nations’ both collective and individual rights are fully honoured. He further advises, having a commonly built country with consensus of all stakeholders, where the stakeholder are respected with the rule of law fully made independent and supreme addresses the grievances of the country’s various nations and peoples.
The conference has been finalised with appreciation unanimously given to the organizers for their all-inclusive approaches and calls for creating such platforms for all Ethiopian political organisations, religious and civic groups to narrow the inherent gap the current regime is using for its political gain.
May the souls of Sidama Looqqe massacre and those of the rest peoples in Ethiopia during the TPLF/EPRDF’s reign of 27 years rest in eternal peace whilst we fight for freedom, justice and equality for which you’ve scarified your precious lives.
May 28, 2018, by Denboba Natie, (SNLF/PAFD/EPOCC)