Cheap Propaganda of “UBBO” Remnants will never mask visible progresses in the Ethiopian Somali region (Ahmed Deeq Hussein)
This article is intended to illustrate the facts of current status of DDSI in terms of Education and Health care service, disprove baseless propaganda of UBBO, indicate number of contradictions Abdirahman Mahdi (Maadeey) interview with Aljazeera, a member of big Brokers of UBBO remnant and disclose their political collapse which has lost validity and credibility. It will also provide a concrete respond to this recent interview of UBBO released by Aljazeera.
Key: – UBBO means ONLF in local context; ONLF stands as (Ogaden National Liberation Front)
Since 1990s, Somali regional state of Ethiopia has passed through a political and leadership constrains due to peace and security threats & other related factors—which had direct or indirect consequences in development—that had already been impeded to carry out basic social services and development projects in the region before last eight years ago.
Ethiopian Somali region had experienced deep rooted security related challenges that accompanied by overwhelming political chaos, as a result of clan based multiple political parties with various aims and objectives which rendered a conflict of unmet political interests by the immaturity, diversities in views of political parties and emotional based politics.
In 1994 G.c. an armed anti-peace rebel group named ONLF went out to countryside to fight against newly born federalism government of Ethiopia led by EPRDF. The region started a new phase of critical period with longstanding bloodshed and death of many innocent civilian due to ONLF. This caused a serious security crisis which made impossible to undertake development programs and impeded basic social services throughout region for decade.
During this period people of the region were extremely affected by Somalia civil war in 1991 G.c. because, most of the people of Somali region were refugees in Somalia refugee camps. After Somalia-Ethiopia war in 1977 G.c. and they came back when Somalia civil war was erupted in 1990s. Therefore, imagine people with such critical circumstances; ONLF leaders announced new war against premature government of Ethiopia led by EPRDF.
Disregarding, before recovering the people from impacts of exodus of Somalia civil war, tribal conflicts and severe drought—that caused severe malnutrition and death for both people and livestock. Thus ONLF suddenly fueled & precipitated to erupt a new war & conflict in the region.
As matter of fact; this period ONLY was ruling party in the region, regional state was ONLF formed government and their parliament was also functioning but without any burning issues with EPRDF, they rolled their flag in dark night and went out to countryside then started fighting and inside conflict across the region.
On other hand, late Prime Minister visionary leader of Ethiopia and his party EPRDF attempted to stop shedding blood and conflict through negotiations with elderly and community leaders to begin peaceful talk with ONLF to solve their concerns. But ONLF anti-peace group leaders could not able to open their ears & listen what EPRDF was seeking to get solution.
Later the situation in the region became very complex and complicated with devastating clashes due to anti-peace armed insurgents (ONLF known as UBBO in local context), which has left great impacts on the lives of civilians, physical torture, rape and marginalized pastoralist community of the region not to benefit basic social services and developmental programs of regional state. Although; the developmental programs could not able to be carried out and implement throughout region as result of these insurgents led security threats.
War crime against humanity made by ONLF (UBBO) few sample cases scenario
As we know the war crime against humanity made by ONLF for innocent civil society of Somali region are enormous and infinitive—that beyond what can be summarized with few pages but for sure; it can be a big volume of textbook which needs huge resources, efforts and time to study, record and document acts of human right violations that committed with this anti-peace group across the region since 1994 G.c. when they started armed conflict inside Somali region of Ethiopia.
N.B. I tried to note only few case scenario of war crime against humanity that ONLF committed which can be sample indicator for ONLF Human right violations apart from mass killing that cannot be easily documented.
In 2006 G.c. I was undergraduate student at Jimma University, I was told—that a young pastoralist man who was searching his lost camels somewhere around Shegosh woredas ONLF surgically removed two of his ears, nose and tongue with sharp instrument. When I heard this information I was shocked and thought it’s like government propaganda against UBBO (ONLF) but 6 years later after my graduation I have seen my naked eyes that particular pastoralist young boy in Jig-jiga and everything that I was told when I was at Jimma was actually true. It was shocking inhumanity incidence I have ever heard. Because of three out of five of his sense organs that human being belongs were removed, damaged and critically harmed. His anatomical structure is totally deformed and disfigured. When you see his skull or head looks like a monkey not like mankind. He psychologically traumatized and stigmatized. This is one of absolute example of inhumanity act made by ONLF.
Other case scenario that I personally know. They slaughtered a 90 years old a blind Sharif man who could not stand without support around Hamaro woreda. He was most respected people among Muslim community specially Somalis. Two other aged community leaders who were praying inside mosque in Cel-ogaden were also killed because they do not support only ONLF ideology. Further, 80 years old man who was innocent was killed around Gunagada woreda because of his daughter’s husband is one of Liyu Police commander for this reason they strangulated him with cord and die.
In 2015 Ambulance transporting with Mother retained placenta to Dagahmadow health center and 7 other members of her family including the Mother, sister, and brother of her husband ONLF armed group fired shot and killed all of them except the Mother with retained placenta was survived out of eight one family members.
In Mara’ato kebele of kebri-dahar woredas they killed two innocent women, one was pregnancy and other one was lactating Mother. Actually the war crime made by ONLF is infinitive and unaccountable and sometimes killing is better than deadly physical injures and handicapping, I saw another young man who two of his legs were amputated by Ax (Faas). They killed elderly people who were trucking water during severe droughts and water shortage, and also people drilling boreholes were killed.
Regarding to what Abdirahman Mahdi told to Aljazeera saying 30% of women in Somali region are raped by the Ethiopia arms is too cheap criticism which has no base and no ground in reality but as matter of fact; we know a young woman in Bargun kebele who was raped around 50 armed UBBO insurgents at once in some place and gave her name called “SAL ADAG” which mean a woman with strong Buttock. This is some of the facts of UBBO’s inhumanity acts. Let alone women but also they raped animals (goat) for true incident that every person in the Somali region and Somali speaking people around the world are well known.
UN vehicles burned, UN staffers killed who were working humanitarian assistance and kidnaped, and more than 80 big truckers owned by Somaliland merchants but loaded by region’s traders were burned and lost huge capital of the people. The aim of burning these trade truckers were to create clashes and hostility between two brotherhood civilians Somaliland people and people of Somali region of Ethiopia.
ONLF Recent fake propaganda interview with Aljazeera TV news channel:
On 7 may 2016 Abdirahman Mahdi member of residual brokers of ONLF gave Aljazeera correspondent with ridiculous interview which is absurd about the Ethiopian Somali region current status.
When I saw this interview and the way he talks I wonder his fake propaganda which is baseless and very cheap to sell. When you digest what he politically claims and future directions of their agendas. It’s totally contradicting from their original claims, misleading and away from the reality on the ground. Mr. Abdirahman Mahdi told Aljazeera that Somali region has only one high school and one hospital which is shame on him that cannot be assured for international community.
Factual status of Ethiopian Somali region:
Already our people are well familiar and know the facts about progress in the region. So far We know that Ethiopia-Somali region has ABE (alternative Basic Education) 1822 schools, 1489 primary schools and 152 high schools of which only one High school was inherited from Derge regime according to 9 Months Regional Education Bureau report in 2016 GC.
In Somali region education sector facilities are increasing to expand access to education services. The region has two universities Jig-jiga University and Kebri-dahar University which is initial stage of construction, there are three Health Science Colleges such as Jig-jiga, Gode & kebri-dahar Health Science colleges which are trained diploma programs in clinical nurses, midwifery nurses, laboratory technicians, pharmacist, and environmental health professionals. And recently Jigjiga Health Science has started degree program training.
The region currently has four poly-tech colleges including Jig-jiga, Gode, Kebri-dahar, & Jarati poly-tech College. Meanwhile 6 other poly-tech colleges were laid down stone foundations in this years by the regional state president HE Mr. Abdi Mohamoud Omar.
Abdurrahman Mahdi and his blindness arguments saying that Somali has only one Hospital. He told there are 200 nurses servicing per 100,000 population in other regions in the country but as he said in Somali region per 200,000 population there is 1 nurses which is absolutely shame to him and his group that we call them residual UBBO brokers. We know Somali region has 11 hospital including Meles Zenawi Memorial referral hospital which is almost under final stage of equipping medical instruments and soon will start services and kebri-dahar second hospital which is under finishing construction. On other hand, Ethiopian Somali region has 208 health centers of which 140 are functional whereas the remaining 68 health centers are most of them under equipping with medical equipment and some few are still under construction. There are also 1064 Health post that provide health care service at community level including teaching 16 health extension package.
We provide scholarships for Somali such as Somaliland, Puntland and Jubaland train then nurses, midwifes, laboratory technician extra field of studies. The question is how our mother seek maternity and medical care the areas that we give scholarship for nursing training, we have three Health Science colleges that graduated per year more than 2000 health professionals. Where they are servicing these health care providers but Abdirahman Mahdi told there is one nurse per 200,000 population in Somali region which is amazing to talk such words. This is not political critique rather it’s cheap political bargaining and shame on him to such futile and useless propaganda for media dissemination.
It’s very surprising and ridiculous to say such abnormal and cheap propaganda which has lost its validity that has not market value to listen by international community and people of the region as well. But it indicates that UBBO propaganda has already known to be valueless and lost its credibility which cannot represent the facts of actual situation of Somali region in the era of information technology and global village.
He told that they are Fighting for rights of self-determination, He denied that UBBO wants to secede from the rest of the country, again he denied that Eritrea provide logistics and military support, he “said” we are going to unite whole people of Ethiopia and create new democrat in Ethiopia and fight for democratic change in Ethiopia by collating five opposition ethnic groups including Oroma, sedamo, Benshagul, and gambale opposition groups according to Madeey/Mahdi. This is very clear that their previously claims are being swallowed back to their stomach which was determination and liberation from Ethiopia, so if the case is this? Ethiopia -Somali region is self-autonomy region under the framework of 1995 national constitution of Ethiopia like other regions of country.
One thing that people should understand is that the UBBO remnant has no objective, goal and strategic vision rather they are guided with the interests of few individuals who are called UBBO residual to collect many from other ethnic diaspora community after when the Somali region diaspora community was completely shifted their support to government projects like investing big multimillion projects in the region and the country, supporting Abay dam construction. This paradox shift shows the support of people of the region inside and abroad to ONLF is absolutely below zero.
He told to Aljazeera that they were part of Ethiopian national constitution in 1994 but before endorsement, it’s good to know that they were part of national constitution during preparation and drafting. Then they started to open fire against newly born federalism government of Ethiopia but their target was actually unarmed civil society—that they killed, tortured and rapped
Recent improvements and promising destiny of Ethiopian Somali region:
During past eight years, Somali region has accomplished a remarkable progress in terms of social services, developmental infrastructures including health facilities, education, water, road; telecommunication coverage and ensured reliable security condition without exaggerations or undermining a reality on the ground. Because Somali region recognized security is top of agenda. Thus, security stabilization was invested with huge efforts and resources to make sure the optimum level of peace & security is in place. Meanwhile, peace & security became key prerequisite for development. Therefore; the region has intensified to hasten developmental projects across the region for the last several years since the peace is guaranteed.
Certainly, current regional state administration has succeeded a tangible achievements than previous; mainly peace, security, good governance and developments have noted dramatic outcome and promising the destiny of our region—that cannot be denied and can be witnessed by the people of the region, national government and international community including developmental and humanitarian partners, donor agencies and other bilateral international stakeholders operating in the Somali region of Ethiopia.
Our people realized—that developmental projects are key elements of peace and security stabilization which is fundamental concern of regional state by using special force known as Liyu Police owned by regional state to stabilize primarily inside conflicts induced by ONLF anti-peace group that dictated and directed ideologies based interest of Eritrea & other foreign countries like Egypt.
In addition, Somali region has improved basic social services such as education, Health care and health Services infrastructures like (Hospitals, & Health centers), water and sanitations, livestock and agriculture particularly, voluntarily basin resettlement for pastoralist community have achieved to convert into agro-pastoralist way of life, and to be more resilience community during drought shocks. Infrastructures have predominantly been increased i.e. urbanization and public institutions, and relatively business and economic developments have also been improved in recent years.
The Somali region of Ethiopia is striving to build a broader political image and completely to change negative attitude towards Somali region into positive one by other Ethiopians and international community. Therefore, in order to construct the broader picture of the region. The regional government has shown remarkable development progress, reliable peace & security and has ensured good governance principles including women empowerment in political decision making process, and economical opportunity—that national & international stakeholders praised.
Finally, progress in Somali region is beyond what can ne masked baseless propaganda of UBBO remnant through media but it can be an indicative politically the end collapse of UBBO remnant agenda and shorten their span of survival to collect money from diaspora communities of others ethnics and to exist anymore.