This week African Union (AU) celebrated its Golden Jubilee of what it calls the 50th
years of achievement celebration under the headline of strengthening Pan-Africanism and African renaissance. But for the Oromo community in Ireland the story was different. On the day of the African Day Celebration the Oromo’s stall tells a different story, a story
that questions the very importance of the existence of the AU; the story that tells the inability of the AU to deal with the issues of its people; the story of Oromo’s years to years true life, the story of slavery in the country the AU celebrate what it says the past good days.
We were opposing the existence of AU, though we know that many intellectuals, analysts and media outlets question the need for AU’s existence itself. We hope AU, one day may become a better organization that stands for African people. But so far AU has failed do any meaningful thing for Africans. To raise just some of them, first what did AU do
about the question of Oromo for self determination, what did it say the killing, disappearances and torture of Oromo students, intellectuals, farmers and businessmen? What did AU with decades’ long conflict in Darfur? Why it can not solve it. What did AU say about the mass killing in Kenya? Did it say anything the conflict in Congo? What did the AU say about the human rights crisis in Zimbabwe? Most the pressing African problems were dealt with by AU but by the governments and communities outside Africa whether there is a calculated benefit or not, the problems of Libya, the genocide of Rwanda, the crisis in Somalia, are only few where AU show little or no role to sole African problems.
AU even seems do not care about the people when they sit in the AU meeting with those notorious dictators such as the late Meles, Bashir of Sudan, Mugabe of Zimbabwe, etc. These people are isolated from international community, and some of them are indicted by international criminal court because of the multiple genocide the have committed to their people. That may be the reason why many people say AU is a bunch of corrupt leaders who try to defend each other against mass movement and public upraising.
We Oromos still do not give up on AU. We believe AU can do better to solve the problems of Oromo and other peace loving African people. That is why we were telling them that we are still in colony by the time AU celebrates its Golden jubilee. The shame is that AU had to know and oppose to the colonizers. AU may have done well when choosing Finfinne (Addis Ababa) as its centre because Finfinne is the centre of the country of Oromo people who used the Gadaa system for generations. Gadaa system can be said the first democratic public institution used by us until we fall under colony. But, AU did not know, or fail to acknowledge that it has been holding meeting in the empire
that is anti peace, anti freedom and anti human rights. AU must have known that Ethiopia is a prison of human race, a prison of freedom, a prison of democracy. This has a devastative effect on the image of AU and needs to be considered.
We Oromos in Ireland spoke very clearly and loudly while celebrating the African Day in Dublin. Whatever achievement AU celebrates, we Oromos are African who are still in slavery. We told this to the African and international community implicitly that AU fall short of its responsibility of standing for its people. We told to the media to the big and to the small, to the young and to the adult, to the friends and to the enemies that we are still fighting slavery, injustice and state of colonization. We will continue doing same until
we get free. On the day we created a scene that posse and a point that people discuss. Everyone came to the celebration understood that our question is beyond political question. We are asking for our freedom, our dignity and the right to our own country and resources. We have the right to be free, the right to our own resources, and the right to nature given human rights. AU and the international community have the obligation,
under the international law and under their own stands, to support Oromos, the fight against the colony. Whether AU comes to its mind or not, we will continue our journey to freedom. We will fight ‘terror with terror’, as someone said, until we set ourselves free.