The last kicks of a dying horse

August 20, 2018 Africa , Opinion , OPINION/NEWS

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Alem Hailu G/Kristos



An Amharic adage runs “If I am no more, let no lush grass grow!” said a donkey.


It encapsulates a message that drags into light the selfish few who do not bat an eye about the wellbeing and existence of others in so far as their pot bellies are full by fair means or foul. Lechers, for far too long, do not want to lose their safe haven or comfort zone – sucking blood to fatten by the day rather than leave a modest life by the sweat of their brow.


They give a hoot about citizens that are stripped of peace. They never mind if a tranquil nation is rocked by hooligans that loot business centers and put churches on fire in broad daylight.


Fatuous, they are inured to the grotesque situation they are in. Their vision is myopic to things of the coming generation. “Let us feast today, why should we care if famine pervades tomorrow?” is their catchphrase.


The tragic incident that recently surfaced in Ethio-Somali is no different from this. Before detained, the despot state president Abdi lley was wreaking havoc in Jig-Jiga recruiting armed bodyguards from his clan. These henchmen of his were alacritous to do anything he orders throwing law and order into shambles.


As he had been serving a Trojan horse to the displeased, emasculated from using the nation’s wealth to gluttonous motives, he was trying to instigate religion-based conflicts oblivious to the fact that Christians and Muslims have peacefully coexisted in Ethiopia ever since the inception of the latter. All his efforts were in vain. No sooner had he been detained, Jig-Jiga regained its normalcy telling on the fact that the to dos, which marred the peace of the town for a while, are ascribable to his self-motive.


That is exactly what religious leaders, elders, businesspersons, residents of the town and elites made clear after Jig-Jiga regained its status quo. They reflected the genuine democracy the government pledged to usher in is to create a level ground. As such every possible challenge could get a solution. “There must be an invisible hand behind the mess! The despot was intoxicated by untrammeled power and corruption-amassed wealth. Rioting under the smoke screen of a fictitious secessionist agenda is inane,” residents of the town noted.


“The uncouth behavior witnessed in Jig-Jiga is unbecoming of a Muslim. Spilling the blood of a brother is shameful,” was what religious fathers confirmed on ETV.


The reformed government of Ethiopia is combing out the corrupt and parochial at every layer of the government’s administrative machinery. Presumably, they could conspire to bog down activities. The outages of power that were not there and the slackening of internet connections must be checked in time.


Citizens and the government must not let down their guard against such officials and politicians that lost their charm due to improprieties.


Breaking a strong national bond, trying to create ethnic-based islands is not plausible.


Ethiopians should keep their resilience towards peace, unity and development. This propensity, acid tested by colonizers as well as the irresponsible and the corrupt on various occasions, has sailed safe the tide of time.


Fine tuning their heads to their heartbeat – Ethiopia first –  Ethiopians, which had been exemplary to the world, must turn a deaf ear to the divisive ideas of those who spare no effort to ramshackle the nation if denied the chance to sponge on the nation indefinitely.


Evidently the to dos we witness here and there are the last kicks of a dying horse – the corrupt and biased system. Soon the last nail will be hit on the coffin of this system that has already got its leg in the grave. All the more so, as the reformed government is riding popular support coming up with viable policy directions and determined to root out improprieties. Though exercising patience is sagacious, such bent must have a limit as it is only the wise that take lessons from wrong turns.


In parrying social ills and political crises, journalists, now unshackled from tacit censorship, must come to the front to shape citizens’ mindset. Of course, they have to be mindful of the responsibilities free press is accompanied with.





Alem Hailu G/Kristos

A published poet, novelist, editor, translator of masterpieces, literary critic, playwright and journalist from Ethiopia. M.A holder in literature, Addis Ababa University.

Looking for a traditional publisher of a collection of poems. My novel: ‘Hope from the debris of hopelessness’.

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