Beautiful Diversities living in Unity in Ethiopia
The celebration of Nations, Nationalities and Peoples (NNPs) Day has a special meaning for the Ethiopian People in general and Afar people in particular, said senior government officials and experts.
The Day will be celebrated next Friday in Semera, the capital of Afar, under the theme 'Our Constitution for the renaissance' .
Afar has now finalized preparation to host the 12th Ethiopian Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Day.
Afar State President Haji Seyoum Awol in his recent message said that the Day commemorates the endorsement of the Constitution that heralded the beginning of a new chapter in Ethiopian history.
The President expressed that commemorating the Day is special to the people of Afar in particular as the State has gone through prolonged oppression, extreme poverty and sufferings. Mainly, he stressed, Afar is located at the border of Ethiopia and Eritrea which made it vulnerable to recurrent attacks for years.
Mentioning the fact that the past political systems and regimes had left negative impact in the State, the people of Afar have paid huge sacrifice to end up the national oppression and bring about the Constitutional System.
He further accented that “the Constitution that has enabled the State and the people of Ethiopia to join hands willfully, live together in equality through building a participatory new democratic system.”
President Haji further noted that the celebration of the Day at Afar State, which is the origin of human kind, play significant role in advancing the renaissance journey of the State and the country in general.
In relation to the 12th NNPs Day, Speaker of the House Yalew Abate on his part said that the Constitution unveils a new chapter to Ethiopia towards ensuring democracy, equal benefits and participation of all the peoples with their own freewill and determination.
Noting that the event is held around Dallol and Artale (Er tale) tourist sites, he emphasized that the celebration would create further opportunity to understand the history of human origin and the untapped tourism potential of the State in addition to the recognition given to the diversified beauty of the nation.
The Speaker recalled that the nation has once passed through arduous struggle to build democratic system that accommodate diversities of Nations, Nationalities and Peoples of the country. However, he further noted, Nations, Nationalities and Peoples of Ethiopia have bravely paid immense sacrifice and fought bitterly to change the situation for good.
The Constitution, which is endorsed some 23 years back, has clearly put in its preamble that the common destiny of Nations, Nationalities and Peoples is based on correcting past wrong relations, ensuring common benefits for all, sustaining peace and reliable democracy, he underscored.
As to him the democratic unity, relations and cooperation among Nations, Nationalities and Peoples have been growing remarkably and witnessed multi-sectoral achievements throughout those years.
Stating that the ethnic diversity which is based on Constitutional system would be reversed by no means, he reaffirmed this has been proved with the shining achievements made in the nation so far.
Senior Public Relation Expert at Addis Ababa Communication Bureau Rahel Wondimu shares the comments given by the officials.
Rahel, who often produces talk shows on the matter, told The Ethiopian Herald that the celebration of the Day has a special meaning in correcting past mistakes and wrong relations that were reflected among the diverse Nation's, Nationalities and peoples of Ethiopia.
The Constitution has given guarantee to enjoy diversities of language, culture and religion which are foundations in the ongoing democratization process. She further stated the Day is also a turning point where Ethiopians have started expressing themselves and their identities without frustration and shame.
Moreover, she added “it is a historic moment in starting a new journey of building one Socio-economic and political community.”
Ethiopia had been identified as a country where social injustices, economic exploitation, political oppression, human rights violation and democratic rights deprivation were reflected.
She further noted linguistic, cultural and religious discrimination had brought hatred, conflict and disrespect among diversities in the nation for long.
As result, she added, there were commonly dissatisfactions and revolts in different parts of the country. “But after the implementation of federalism and the constitutional system this situation has been highly at ease and I believe that the nation has promoted diversities by recognizing and creating respectful condition among one another.”
Dr. Yohannes Gebreselassie in his writing titled ‘The Ethiopian Nations, Nationalities and Peoples’ Day (ENNPD): Becoming a Symbol of Unity in Diversity,' stated that the Day is now becoming a symbol of peace, democracy, justice, tolerance, love and affection between and among Nations, Nationalities and Peoples of Ethiopia.
As he described it, the Day is a manifestation of unity that embraces diversity, an expression of cultural, religious, linguistic and ethnic multiplicity where all Nations, Nationalities and Peoples bring their cultural assets to one place.
Thus, he capitalized that multi-ethnic, multicultural and multi-linguistic people gather in the different cities of the nation every year in order to celebrate this peoples’ festival as it is an expression of the democratic federalism.
To date, eleven cities did host this remarkable event and it is recalled that the 11th Ethiopian Nations, Nationalities and Peoples Day had been colorfully celebrated in Harari State, Harar town.
BY YARED GEBREMEDEN