Al Mariam Duped by Tamagn Beyene (Genenew Assefa)
Who, in a space of three-weeks, flatly contradicts himself on a subject, no less, as serious as the fate of the Ethiopian government? The short answer is, Al Mariam, though he is not the only smart-aleck to flip- flop on the issue of what keeps the EPRDF going. Yet ignorance of the underlying factors of EPRDF’s staying power does not seem to deter the Al Mariams from hazarding predictions of state collapse on every small and big occasion. The latest occasion to spur wild speculation of EPRDF’s fall is doubtless the concurrent outbreak of distemper in parts of Amhara and Oromia regions. But as the dust settled, though redress of the root cause remains, Al Mariam somewhat tempered his overconfident projection of a deadline for government handover to, strangely enough, unspecified claimants, waiting in the wings, as it were. But no sooner the hour of his pre-formulated ground-zero lapsed than the Professor smartly left open the exact date of EPRDF’s inevitable demise. This much is visible in the current sequel to his endless forsight of a terrible ending in store for the founding party of the Ethiopian federation. Let there be no mistake, Al Mariam still believes that EPRDF’s days are numbered. The only change, if you can call it that, is a patent slippage from certainty to ambiguity in the time-line of his latest forecast of Woyane’s predetermined doom – a move which might possibly have taken the clever among his readers by unexpected surprise.
But the Professor cares less that his sudden attenuation of his initial certitude in his own time-bound conjuncture of EPRDF’s downfall could embarrass his admirers. Lucky for him, his loyal disciples lack the mental dexterity to notice the temporal indeterminacy of his freshest prediction of the impending twilight of the ruling party. How could they whilst they are too busy praying for at least one of Al Mariam’s seemingly endless prophecies to come true? Apparently his admirers are spellbound by his fashion of prophesying a calamitous end-time, often keyed, for especial effect, to a hip-hop beat mixed with the polytonal rhythm of a Southern evangelist sermon. A style, as it were, Al Mariam must have taken pains to master, partly to make up for the depthless content of his flurry of alarm-sounding pamphlets that fittingly only the anti-EPRDF websites post with flattering commentaries to boot. Read more