To reinforce the smokeless industry

Ethiopia,which is the cradle of mankind, boasts natural touristic spots that run the gamut from the Dashen mountain, Blue Nile falls, Sof Omer cave to the Denakle depression.

It as well prides in handmade touristic attractions like Axum and Lalibela.

Owing to this magnetic pulls and its being peculiar in so many ways, Ethiopia is the focus of attention of many.

Apart from these tangible heritages, it as well stands out for its wide-ranging intangible heritages. The finding of the true cross Meskel and thanks giving Irecha are but to mention the celebrations of this week. Various events of marking the ensuing of the new year of Ethiopia like Feche Chembelala are proceeding apace.

Traditional administrative and democratic systems as well as court procedures like Gada are found among the prominent attractions.

The country is generating hard currency from the smokeless industry. But given its potential in the sector, Ethiopia has not yet reaped as much benefits as it should. It suffices to comparatively assess reports from neighboring countries like Kenya.

Here , the tourism day was celebrated for the 31th time in Gambela on September 27 under the theme “Digital technology transfer for the development of the tourism sector!”

This sheds light on the fact that there is a call for capitalizing the utilization of technology to augment the hard currency the country is garnering from the tourism sector.

A cutthroat competition marks this era. To emerge successful in tourism brushing shoulders with those that have proved outstanding in the global arena, when it comes to embracing cutting-edge technology, there is no batting of eyes. As the large segment of the tourists that come here are from the developing countries, keeping abreast with modern trends is a must do. It is making use of the digital technology tourists get information about their destinations. They want to check about the tranquility, infrastructural facilities and services they get in their country of destination.

Also developing information database using recent technology is exigent. It will be a step forward. Properly collecting data on how many tourists came the previous year,which touristic spots were visited and how much foreign exchange was collected,among others, are decisive to evaluate the past,better handle trends today and prognosis situations down the road.

It as well as serves a key toolkit in the backpacks of policymakers,for it helps to single out hurdles in the sector and troubleshoot them. Businesspersons and investors in the tourism sector too have to be foresighted enough to build tomorrow on the bedrock of today leaning on technological utilization. They have to be mindful of international competitions.

In this regard, the government must encourage and support business persons that come aboard the industry. Parallel to this, with in a framework of law, it has to put the task of reinforcing the sector with technological applications so that all will give attention to the required goal. This will help keep pace with those countries that took the lead in modernizing the sector. It as well will open doors for job opportunities. As many youths are engaged in the IT technology they could be incentivized to come up with different applications. Encouraging creative youths to develop mobile applications that lets tourist confirm lodgings,ask rate of foreign exchange,facilitate taxi contracts and know weather forecasts is essential.

Supported by stakeholders, the government must reinforce the sector through training. To translate into action the set plan of rendering the sector vibrant a lot is expected from the culture and tourism Ministry.

All said,outages of internet and electricity that surface at times must also be addressed.////

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It is the just cause that triumphs


By Alem Hailu G/Kristos

As the adage runs “Success comes with a little pain,” it will be quite fatuous to assume set objectives of change could crystallize without facing hurdles specially when doomsayers are regretting lost chances. All the more so, exploiting the slightest inattention or lapse, as naysayers are high on the alert to hijack the wind of change wafting across the country.

In our absence things are going out of control,” they are trying to point a finger at the reformed government in power so that as rescuers they will be allowed another chance to sponge on the country mercilessly turning a blind eye to the majority pushed to the peripheries when it comes to benefits that accrue from national wealth.

That is why they are all ears to hear shortfalls the incumbent could experience. If they fail to get one, they lavish to dish out dozens of unfounded stories on Facebook to terrorize citizens. Sadists, they adore one ethnic group to go for the neck of another, contrary to the age-old outstanding norm of Ethiopians—unity in diversity.

To materialize the aforementioned heinous motive of theirs, outlaying corruption-amassed fortune, they have deployed innumerable Facebook-user idlers who day and night use their mind a workshop of the devil.

True to their evil nature, it gives them utmost pleasure creating disturbances on major events that could serve bright spots on the country’s history. Here, it suffices to recount the blood-shed-triggered conflict they orchestrated at a small town, Burayu(and its environs), found at the outskirt of Addis a week ago, when the country was welcoming a political party leader chased out of the country alleged a terrorist by phony politicians. The incident also coincided with the time Oromo People Democratic Organization( OPDO) was flexing muscles to metamorphose into a vibrant political party changing name(ODP) and political flag as well as injecting new blood and replacing 14 high level party officials.

But to the dismay and chagrin of these conflict mongers, citizens that grew up imbibing Ethiopian culture of love and unity have persisted showcasing aversions to antipathy and vengeance.

The fact that the retaliatory feelings of victimized Gamo youths was placated by elders that made them see to reasons and not to act on a knee-jerk action corroborates the case in point.

Hiding those being chased is another exemplary gesture of a man living in SheroMeda.

These gestures and the return of quiet soon show the xenophobia is an orchestrated one.

The intention of the wicked was sparking ethnic crisis in the country thereby creating a feeble Ethiopia, which they can manipulate as a toy. The reason why they chose Burayu at this point in time resides in this fact.

It was intended to carry across the message that the diplomatic seat Addis is not immune against such an assault. They wanted to use the tragedy a bargaining chip that could help them involve the international community, which has vested interest here, lobby for them to have a shared grab on the rein of power. They so hallucinate forgetful that citizens have equated their diabolic deed a criminal offense. Such a disgusting behavior of fishing in a troubled water and gambling with the lives of citizens rather drags into light their impish nature to all.

Citizens with undivided attention and affection must keep on standing by the side of their God-sent Premier that unflaggingly enunciates love, unity and common growth striking a sensitive cord in the hearts of Ethiopians.

Citizens have put foot down on such lechers. It sure is good they stop their frantic bid as they benefited nothing from similar diabolic deed in some parts of the country except soaking their hands with the blood of innocent civilians.

In the 21st century day dreaming about enslaving civilized people is a pipe dream.

Some political parties and activists must also turn their back on self-seeking bent of theirs. It must be serving the people that must afford them pleasure.

The youth, who are trigger-happy by nature, must not buy the divisive words of the evil. A new academic year has ensued. Parents, teachers, students and the government must communicate well to forestall the evil act of the displeased who talk about disintegration and conflict running against the tide of regional integration and globalization.

While the sagacious bury the hatchet—Like Ethiopia and Eritrea— the devil incarnates sniff for possible or fabricated hatchets to disinter.

Trying to tarnish the image of a premier that rides a popular support does not work. Always it is the just cause that triumphs, for truth is the Almighty incarnate.//

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The Rationale behind Teaching & Studying Ethiopian History

By Alem Hailu

History helps us understand people and societies, the importance of history in our own lives, history contributes to moral understanding, history provides identity, studying history is essential for good citizenship and history is useful in the world of work. Some argue that history has been justified for reasons that Africans no longer accept – history that was thought as if it were the narrative of its colonizers and rulers but not of its people.

Civic education, learning about and appreciating one’s rights, duties, obligations and responsibilities as a citizen and the immediate rules, laws and governance structures within which one exercises citizenship is the first and fundamental step in citizenship. Nevertheless, we have narratives that our children must learn.

Three thousand years ago, Axum was the seat of the earliest Ethiopian kingdom and one of the holiest grounds and traded with the world from the ports of Adulis and subsequently Massawa were the gateway of the Ethiopian Empire. One of the earliest holy mosques in the world is the holy Islamic faith centre, Negash built before many Muslim nations had a mosque. The Ottomans who attempted to colonise Ethiopia were defeated buy Emperor Yohannes and Ras Alula. Ethiopian forces defeated the Italian army at Mequelle on 21 Jan 1986 and at Adwa on first of March 1896.

Adwa has become a quintessential emblem and a pedestal for Pan-Africanism – an important political form of a religious Pan-Africanist worldview appeared in the form of Ethiopianism. Ethiopia still stands as one of the un-colonised nation in Africa.

Pertaining to the aforementioned summarized issue the Ethiopian Herald had a moment of togetherness with Costantinos Berhutesfa Costantinos, PhD Chief Scout, Ethiopian scout Association &President, Lem Ethiopia. He is author of thee book Unleashing African Resilience pertaining to the Rationale behind Teaching & Studying Ethiopian History, some excerpts

Ethiopian Herald

What is the significance of giving Ethiopian History courses?

Costantinos

I am not a historian, but as a citizen, I have had the chance to learn and read Ethiopia historical narratives in school and during my professional life. The current deluge of historical novels and books also serves an opportunity to read more. First, let me summarise the highlights of the culmination of our three thousand-year historical narratives teaching in a few paragraphs. This will help why Ethiopian children of all nations and nationalities who need to appreciate and be proud of our historical narratives that every adult of my age has learned in school.

Three thousand years ago, Axum was the seat of the earliest Ethiopian kingdom and one of the holiest grounds and traded with the world from the ports of Adulis and subsequently Massawa were the gateway of the Ethiopian Empire. One of the earliest holy mosques in the world is the holy Islamic faith centre, Negash built before many Muslim nations had a mosque. The Ottomans attempt to colonise Ethiopia were defeated buy Emperor Yohannes and Ras Alula. Ethiopian forces defeated the Italian army at Mequelle on 21 Jan 1986 and at Adwa on first of March 1896.

Herald

What is the imperative to teach our children Ethiopian History?

Costantinos

Peter N. Stearns of the American Historical Association, in his article why study history, undergirds the fact that history helps us understand people and societies, the importance of history in our own lives, history contributes to moral understanding, history provides identity, studying history is essential for good citizenship and history is useful in the world of work. Some argue that history has been justified for reasons that Africans no longer accept – history that was thought as if it were the narrative of its colonisers and rulers but not of its people. Nevertheless, we have narratives that our children must learn

More than any other nation, Axum became the Seat of the earliest Ethiopian kingdom and one of the holiest grounds, the Church of St. Mary of Zion. The Holy Mosque of Negash built before many Muslim nations had one and the earliest monasteries established by the “Nine Saints” who spread the gospel are found in Ethiopia. The Ottomans attempt to colonise Ethiopia were defeated by Emperor Yohannes and Ras Alula in Gundet and Gurae. As the area through which all trade and communi­cations passed to and from the ports of Adulis and subsequently Massawa were the gateway of the Ethiopian Empire.

During 1890s, the relation be­tween Ethiopia under Emperor Men­elique and Italy rapidly deteriorated because of the Treaty of Wuchalle. Ulti­mately, an advance party of Ras Alula, Ras Mekonnen, Ras Mikael and Ras Wolle and a number of commanders was dis­patched to join Ras On 7 Dec 1895, Ethiopia gained her first victory at Amba Alage, and forces successively defeated the invading army at Mequelle on 21 Jan 1986 and at Adwa on 1st of March, 1896.

Adwa has become a quintessential emblem and a pedestal for Pan-Africanism – an important political form of a religious Pan-Africanist worldview appeared in the form of Ethiopianism. Ethiopia’s African diasporic religious symbolism grew in the 1800s among blacks in the US and the Caribbean, through a reading of Psalm 68:31, Ethiopia shall soon stretch forth its hands unto God, as a prophesy that God would redeem Africa and free the enslaved.

Our quintessential narratives are priceless and hence, every child must learn this.

Ethiopian Herald

Does the stoppage of the course is ascribable to the current political chaos– a generation that does not have an inkling about its roots and bickers over ethnic lines.

Costantinos

Historical narratives of this great nation such as that of Axum, Adwa, Gonder, Harar, Lalibella, etc., written well, serve as our as our practicum that generate information of our past and teach us where we came from and as our most dynamic evidence in the unavoidable quest to figure out who we are. Ethiopians have common folklore, legends and battle narratives through which they have invested in their culture with meaning and value.

The bygones causes the contemporaneous, and so the forthcoming. Historical narratives teach us real resolve on our current level of comprehension, narratives that unpack how our ancestors kept the nation in one piece, thrived despite external and internal wars, and inform us of how these ancestors lived in various epochs of Ethiopian history.

It is a grave error of not schooling our children with these facts in mind.

Ethiopian Herald

Every country put its history as a common /core course (such a case is there in America or China or Russia), assessing past trends (during your generation and EPRDF’s Era) how do you analyse the polarity between our common history and revolutionary ideology

Costantinos

In identifying the three-thousand year historic national tradition as an obstacle for revolutionary democracy, the regime equates the problems posed within the provisos of the social democracy doctrine. Committed by its nature of its political struggle to such standards and ideals, it portrayed the three millennia old narrative as an inherent impediment to pluralism. In place of people established through collective memory and effective history, it desired a nation constructed through concepts and formulae of revolutionary democracy. The issues of political transition it articulates in this context can therefore be seen in part as whatever it states within its ideological problematic, whether its formulation of the issues have anything to do or not with the democratic transition.

Indeed, it may be little more than a setting for experimenting with the themes of inter alia, abolition of class oppression and ethnic precincts created against conventional norms of regional administration. Collective memories must then give way to ideology as a basis of national sentiments and instincts and be replaced by revolutionary argument and justification. Following the lead of the radical student inspired movements of the seventies; its rationality rejected tradition in favour of forms of contemporary nationalism based on themes of self-determination and state capitalism.

I have been on record undergirding the fact that this claim of reductionism in approach to historical narratives along with the naïvely rationalist criticism that goes with it is predicated on the polarity it draws between historically sedimented values, sentiments and symbols, on the one hand. On the other hand contemporary ideas of self-determination based on a dualism of effective history and radical ideology. This polarisation is indefensible in its assumption that the two forms of national experience are mutually exclusive; hence, the arguments it is based on, becomes untenable. Political issues of self-determination inevitably raise problems, which cannot be neatly enslaved within either any one of these ethnic groups or contemporary ideology. While they constitute more or less distinct cultural arena, one cannot conclude they can be seen in isolation from or in opposition to issues of historic tradition.

They constitute broader national elements, intersections, consequences and forms of national experience that are not necessarily incompatible and need not be in conflict. Rather, they are mutually paired. They need not be defined in terms of individual schemes or aggregate of them, but addressed within board-based multi-ethnic process. The commitment to progressive ideas of pluralism and ethnic quality does not compel the use of ethnocentric nationalism in a way that devalues and negates national traditions. The commitment to pluralism does not necessarily entail a rejection of our ancestral heritage. If historic nationalism cannot be said to have a core tradition shared by all ethnic groups, neither, can it be characterised as entirely lacking in elements that cut across and connect diverse communities.

The polarity between historical and ideological basis of our unity can serve a useful critical purpose of evaluating the values and assumptions of citizens against the categories and models of liberationist nationalism. It can help to emphasise the point that its collective memory and experience as a nation should not constitute a drag. Nonetheless, this is not possible so long as the trendiness construes, as it does, the relation between historical and ideological bases in simple opposition terms and attempts to limit historic perception entirely to the present. The problem with the exposé of the tradition as a problem for democratic change, then, is that certain processes, implicitly or explicitly, prevent that tradition from entering into meaningful dialogue with extant politics. The former is excluded from the latter or figure-in only in the overly politicised usage of despotic chauvinism, merely as a target of deconstruction.

Oppression of nationalities has been made the defining characteristic, the sum-total of national tradition, but Ethiopians have folklore, legends and battle narratives through which they have invested in their culture with meaning and value. These have been subjected to materialist criticism from the perspective of scientific standards of historical truth as if they were simply epistemological categories and concurrently dismissed as lacking footing in historical facts.

Belatedly, the historical-ideological polarity has placed a heavy emphasis on ethnic diversities rather than commonalities. This over-emphasis really, is the other side of the equally over-politicised identification in the phrase of the student movement, a prison of nations, hence, the demand the nation to be born again, and born different through self-determination. It would be a faux pas, however, to suggest that this demand, along with the highly negative and overly politicised view of the historical process of state formation on which it is based, constitutes the spontaneous response of communities to their incorporation into the polity. It is not necessarily democratic or popular. No one entire ethnic community in Ethiopia has ever been locked in combat with another or with the state in an all-out struggle for ethnic cleansing or liberation. To mention a few narratives.

Ethiopian Herald

EPRDF had tried to replace it with civic courses. How do you see this? Does Civic courses help in better fighting out corruption? Must the two courses be given parallel?

Costantinos

Beyond platitudes and good intentions, many civil institutions cannot participate in dialogue with states because they lack the personnel with requisite skills and facilities such as research centres and Think Tanks, to inform their arguments or present credible data to support their assertions. Far more critical in determining both the level and quality of dialogue between states and civil society is the political and economic context in which states find themselves. The context for dialogue, co-operation and interface between states and people’s and community-based organisations has so far been determined largely by the rules and wishes of the state and the international donor community. African states enjoy limited sovereignty.

Participation in citizenship is the basis of all other forms of participation in development. Divorced from participation in citizenship, the concept of popular participation in development becomes a mere administrative strategy– a callous manipulation of the innocent and ignorant even if the result might be a “successful project” – but the end can never morally justify the means. Sadly, much of the current jargon about popular participation is based on the administrative desire for project success and effectiveness. Hence, the need for civic education.

True, the evidence for this assertion is the virtual absence of civic education training as a key component of many development programmes and projects. It is the fundamental argument that civic education, learning about and appreciating one’s rights, duties, obligations and responsibilities as a citizen and the immediate rules, laws and governance structures within which one exercises citizenship is the first and fundamental step in citizenship. Without it, Ethiopia will make no significant headway either with new strategies for development or with its tentative lurch towards democratic governance. Democracy could easily degenerate into anarchy if popular participation in citizenship is not viewed as a critical factor in development and democratic governance without popular participation in citizenship.

Nonetheless, one must question the content of the civic education curriculum if they at all address the above assertions and see if the two courses can be given in parallel.

Corruption

Recent allegations of day light robbery of state funds, embezzlement, loan fraud and graft in government institutions have brought the issue of corruption to a new level of alarm. While some economists argue that sleaze fuels the markets of major economies such as the developmental states of the tiger economies; corruption, in all its manifestation, remains a major obstacle to efforts to install and consolidate a developmental system. The organisational imperative of the bureaucratic machine is to command and control, preoccupied with its own survival and enrichment, as the state is the main channel for securing privileged position in society. Corruption cannot be seen in isolation, as its effects permeate societies, and in turn, societal attitudes can either encourage or discourage corruption.

While the prime role of the state in advancing the economy, reducing state involvement in the economy, streamlining the discretionary decision-making authority of its officials, eliminate monopolies and economic distortions that facilitate them and improve accountability. Leadership, political will and public support are essential to the success of stemming any threats of corruption, and that the causes and not just the consequences of these threats have to be addressed. Upholding the rule of law is important to guarantee protection of human rights, ensure judicial predictability.

Creating a merit based and metric civil service is a basic requirement for limiting any threats of corruption and rebuilding public confidence. A culture of professionalism needs to be created and thus, incentives as well as sanctions have to be employed.

Watchdogs are significant components of this strategy can help increase integrity and transparency. Active involvement of civil society is a sine qua non as corruption thrives on secrecy, which countered by an investigative free press that counteracts public perceptions that corruptions inevitable and important people are immune from investigative journalism. Experience has shown that preventing and combating corruption requires a consistent, coherent, broad-based approach and a long-term perspective, as there are collateral damages of counter corruption measures that can stumble on legal protection of constitutionally defined rights.

Ethiopian Herald

What should be the trend down the road here in Ethiopia?

Costantinos

To conclude, historical narratives provide a terrain for moral contemplation, reflecting on the stories of individuals and situations in the past allows our children to test their own moral sense, to hone it against some of the real complexities individuals have faced in difficult settings. People who have weathered adversity not just in some work of fiction, but also in real, historical circumstances can provide inspiration. Historical narratives also helps provide identity, and this is unquestionably one of the reasons all modern nations encourage its teaching in some form. History provides evidence about how our ancestors and the founding fathers built this great nation, how the conventions they created were formed and about how they have changed while retaining structure.

The fact that the entire Ethiopian people of all nations and nationalities fought against external invaders are great historical narratives that are vital for good citizenship today. The fact that 1974 popular uprising against the regime was not attended by any opposition even from the nobility of the time is evidence of the unity of Ethiopians across religion and ethnicity. The fact that Ethiopians rose ensemble against the Dergue was not because of its ethnicity, but of its megalomaniac character, killing millions in famine and terrors.

If this is not a justification to teach history of a nation built on blood and sweat, a clinic of human experience and of informed citizenship, to our children, then what is?

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Calls for inquiry commission, public discourse on ethnicity-charged politics in Ethiopia

The rumour mill has it that behind the curtain there are forces that instigate ‘to dos’. Why? How could they be defanged? What other simmering factors are attributable to such ‘to dos’? Assessing the past three trends, what are the lessons and corrective measures Ethiopia’s reformed government could take?

 

I approached the politician and businessperson Bereket SebSeb who noted that the country is due to embrace a distilled democracy thanks to the initiative of the new premier. But how to kick-start work presupposes taking stock of the reality on the ground. “In a way that is not devoid of a miracle, there are individuals who shot up from rags to riches in a short period of time coming from a jungle,” he said.

 

He further noted “How could those who indulged in improprieties and those on the other end of the scale move forward creating a national confluence? The two can hardly occupy the same boat, for the former ones have an axe to grind— insulated against accountability keeping on sponging a nation.”

 

He also said “Those who illegally amassed wealth in billions with impunity, as evidenced lately, could wreak havoc here and there either directly or using Trojan horses. There will be no stone they will leave unturned. What prohibits them from hiring mercenaries?”

 

Hence, to move out of uncharted waters, as the saying goes, ‘once bitten twice shy’, instituting a highly neutral commission of inquiry composed of true and disinterested Ethiopians that were diplomats on the continental or global arena is exigent. Those that do not say ‘I hail from this ethnic group’ or that must be prudentially singled out.

 

After independently handling tasks, the commission will present its findings and panaceas for the government to act accordingly. All the more so, bickering and dissensions the attendant ills of the challenges mentioned earlier, seem to pervade the current political atmosphere of Ethiopia.

 

According to Bereket, the commission could have dual purposes illumining the right political avenue and solving economic problems getting embezzled money back to the government’s coffers.

 

As a think thank, members could also throw light on road maps the reformed government could pursue to forestall fracases. This way the premier stands a chance to devolve responsibilities. Problems that are sources of conflict must get answers round a horseshoe table, as to him.

 

He stressed, mending wrong turns made by the Ethiopian People Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) must also be made a point. “Prior to the coming of EPRDF into the political scene, citizens used to cherish a nationalities feeling. The then borders were dispute free. It sure will be good (if) a recourse is made to them.”

 

There is no gainsaying Ethiopia must pursue a pluralist system. Conducting research on the federalism system copying the best fit for Ethiopia is essential. As to him, the federalism that Ethiopia currently pursues is one that contravenes anthropological views— the linage of human beings is the same. “I think it attempts to confine human beings in terms of blood, flesh and bones. It does not work. As such it should not come as a surprise that a person who belongs to a given ethnic group does not believe another belongs to it. Such a thing was not there, it is the Machiavellian gesture of the unreformed government that gave rise to such a thing.”

 

He went on to say “If we see the international scenario, there is no race called German. It is those who live in Germany who are called German. There is no race called French. Those who live in France are French people.”

 

Constantinos Berhetesfa, professor in public policy, said when Derg chased out political parties and assailed party members the latter sought refuge retreating to their respective communities for protection. It is from this unfolding that political parties, which lean on ethnic politics, proliferated when the transition government came into life. EPRDF and it allies are among them. The same is true with the competing ones. “But ethnic politics is not amenable to democracy. That is why countries like Ghana banned ethnicity-charged politics. Ethnicity should not be a prospect for differences. It rather has to be a source of unity. As witnessed in the first AU meeting, Africa opted not to espouse fragmentation in a bid to be socioeconomically sustainable.

 

He also said it sure is good political parties are organized along their outlooks. They have to come up with respective political programs based on socioeconomic thinking and the ideals of democracy. Ethnicity was not a question of Ethiopia. For instance nobody asked about Mengistus ethnicity.

 

He said “As a way forward the aforementioned issues have to be brought to light for a political discourse. True to Dr Abiy’s enunciation of unity, we have to stress the issue of Ethiopianism. Pertaining to regional set ups the country has to make a recourse to its former provincial and Awraja administrations that were put in place in consultation of experts well versed in political geography.”

 

Simply putting enclaves of ethnic groups in the administrative framework doesn’t work. Such a bent could create a hotbed for corruption, genocide and religion-based conflicts. Also, there is a call for banning political parties organized under ethnic lines. Deepening the political awareness of the citizenry and strengthening ideals and institutions of democracy must also be made a point,” he underlined.

 

Bereket noted that enunciating love is not something to be opposed or fully contradicted. I neither fully support nor fully oppose Dr Abiy Ahmed. What is needed is a clearly defined legal framework.

 

Democracy, equality and the rule of law have to be there. During the emperor Haile Selassie regime though there was a parliament – it was a rubber stamp one since the decision making and directive giving body appended to it could not take a stand in favor of an issue that contradicts the emperor.

 

Dilating on the comparison, he said during the Derg regime as the government was pursuing socialism it was killing whoever opposed it, cruelly appropriating properties.

 

He added, the revolutionary democracy, the incumbent before reform, was vacuous as, like cats and rats, revolution and democracy could not go along. Revolution entails detaining, killing and appropriating property. The party highlighted the world democracy to win the favor of the IMF, World Bank and liberal countries. Hence, hearing promises about democracy and window dressings towards that end, donors thought democracy was taking off the ground. A dupe they released funds.

 

Prof. Constantinos seconded the idea; “Revolutionary democracy in our country’s context seems one party’s desire for an inexorable grip of power to continue with one party. Doing research, we better develop our indigenous culture of democracy like Gada,” he said.

 

Regarding lessons the reformed government could take from the previous two regimes and incumbent before reform, Bereket suggested three things:

 

Creating provinces interweaving ethnic groups like Chebona Gurage, Yefatna Temuga, Hayekochena Butajera, among others, was the strength of emperor Haile Selassie. Taking lessons from the emperor, a mindful of natural resources and equitable distribution of wealth, it is possible to redefine the federal states in some groups. It is possible to name them either in numbers or other common features.

 

He recommended taking timely punitive measures on offenders discourages similar provocative moves. I remember hearing Mengistu Haile Mariam saying “We breakfasted those who thought us for lunch!” Though I do not believe in killings it is sagacious to emasculate those who have ill intent.

 

Lastly, giving a kiss of life to the country’s economy is a lesson that could be drawn from Meles Zenawi.

 

Property rights should also be given due attention; “Starting from the reign of empress Zewditu onwards a new government was ousting its predecessor by force. This fad resulted in the appropriation of properties. Citizens should be held accountable to the properties they own by unfair means whenever a new government comes or the old one gets off the scene. On the other end of the scale, they should get protections to their legal properties.

 

That is, things have to be constitutional specially regarding land and residential houses,” he concluded.

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Free Press: With or without a free rein?

What is the significance of a free press? How could it be translated into action mindful of responsibilities? Why do some say it has to be wedded with a Regulatory Agency?

 

This reporter approached seasoned and young journalists with the question: ‘What is your take on past trends and ways forward?’

 

Kebede Anise was Editor-in-Chief of Ethiopia Tikdem Gazette. He began his explanation with Thomas Jefferson’s famous quote “…were it left to me to decide whether we should have a government without a newspaper, I prefer a free press without a government!” This quote highlights the role of a free press in keeping the government in check and helping a country sail its ship of development to safe waters navigating through hurdles.

 

He said unless the foundation of a building is solid enough it will turn into rubble. By the same token, devoid of a free press how could a country stand on its own feet? A nation is not a shooting star that sparks for a while and retreats to the background. It has to continue. To do so, it relies heavily on the unity, strength and vision-implementation bent of its children.

 

He further stated that journalists play an active role to the aforementioned effect. In the absence of the circulation of free ideas, in the unavailability of proper work flow and without a smooth information dissemination and sharing, how could a country stand on its own feet? It is citizens that handle the nation building task. Free press and free state comprise the oxygen of democracy. Accordingly, to keep Ethiopia going these ingredients are decisive. Unless our country resuscitates, proves strong and cuts a healthy posture, our fate will be sealed.

 

“Mending wrong turns such as liberating the media, the new prime minister Dr Abiy Ahmed, who popped up on the political scene, is doing a commendable task to get the country on the right track. He is allowing the country to standout in the global arena. God bless him! But the impish few forming a circle and some serving Trojan horses of the wicked try to create hurdles and clashes here and there like the despot from JigJiga,” he added.

 

He noted that enunciating love, atoning for the misdeeds perpetrated by the self-seeking and merciless, ushering in peace and parrying ethnic conflicts, the Premier is trying his level best to let the country stride on the avenue of all-inclusive prosperity. It is only those that have ‘gone off their rockers’ that resist the winning formula- unity.

 

He further noted, media has to come to the forefront to collect, analyze and strengthen such positive outlooks. “That is why I stress without a strong media that knows its responsibilities, a nation is as good as dead. Hence, stifling media with censorship is inimical to democracy and good governance. The incumbent, upon coming to power, did abolish censorship but later on, under the smokescreen of image building, began tacitly imposing that whosoever fails to second me is the country’s enemy. It had also been brazen in turning post placement based on affiliation than merit. ‘We only need his/her loyalty,” it was saying. This was not good. Such folly shows government was in the ditch. But now, the reformed government is striving to normalize things.

 

Journalist-turned-instructor Abera Wendewossen said there is a prognosis that the source of conflicts down the road would no longer be between countries and blocks like the ones created during the cold war but based on ethnic bickering, religious wrangling and group tensions. When the population boom surfaces, people will make a point confining themselves in ethnic and religious circles. This fact is palpable in the present day East Africa. Media outlets play a key role in promoting peace or adding fuel to the fire. “I believe to a certain degree media should be abstemious especially on ethnic and tribal issues. Especially in our country, noted for ethnic diversity, this could not underplayed. It suffices to see cases in Rwanda and Kenya,” he further said.

 

He noted, for instance after serving as midwife to the coming into life of a new leadership in the country, some media outlets are exhibiting a lapse dilating on an ethnic group of their interest. As never before, they are belaboring issues of race, tribe and religion. Observably, they are inciting people-to-people clashes. This is uncharacteristic of Ethiopians. Especially, this disposition is highly manifest on Facebook. There has to be a regulatory agency that controls both the broadcast and print media. Though, I do not support censorship, media outlets should not be allowed to run amok coming up with their own principles and interests. This is going astray.

 

To the question “Will it not been exercising censorship to put in place a regulatory body?” Abera responded’ when we reflect on the upturn of outlooks among the government and citizens, it must be reminiscent of the fact that a rippling effect will be evidenced in the regulatory body. The media and the regulatory body could click each other to a better result. In a country where ethnic diversity is manifested, downplaying regulation could have an adverse effect. Particularly, in the social media those with ill motives could get a fortress to disseminate divisive and hatred-and-clashes provoking sentiments.’

 

Also, journalists in the mainstream media must be prudent rather than fully echoing mobs’ justice. They have to analyze and prognose what is unfolding with a cool head. They have to be disinterested and consistent in their reporting.

 

Another journalist who wants to be unanimous said “Sponsors must not wield unnecessary influences on the private media contravening ideals of free press!”

 

Kebede reflected “Previously, giving a ring for a corrupt government official used to suffice to hack through the bureaucratic logjams. But now to carry out a task worth one million Birr one has to pay five hundred thousand Birr to penetrate through the labyrinth! It seems a mockery of development. Fortunately, a breath of fresh air is sweeping through Ethiopia. Like the Americans, we have to say “The buck stops here!” and fight out corruption and step up fair taxation. To this effect, exploiting free press must not be put on the back burner.”

 

Regarding corruption, Abera said that the reports we hear seem to be speculation as they are not substantiated with well documented evidence to start legal procedures. There has to be a system that allows journalists to work hand-in-glove with the police, government officials and lawyers. Investigative journalism has to be strengthened. Regarding this, government officials have to be forthcoming in giving information in line with the information law. Gradually, when the trend gets credence, journalists will not face challenges in getting information.

 

 

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Ethiopian History courses must not be underplayed but reconstructed for all inclusiveness

via Ethiopian History courses must not be underplayed but reconstructed for all inclusiveness

History helps us understand people and societies, the importance of history in our own lives, history contributes to moral understanding, history provides identity, studying history is essential for good citizenship and history is useful in the world of work. Some argue that history has been justified for reasons that Africans no longer accept – history that was thought as if it were the narrative of its colonizers and rulers but not of its people.

Civic education, learning about and appreciating one’s rights, duties, obligations and responsibilities as a citizen and the immediate rules, laws and governance structures within which one exercises citizenship is the first and fundamental step in citizenship. Nevertheless, we have narratives that our children must learn.

Three thousand years ago, Axum was the seat of the earliest Ethiopian kingdom and one of the holiest grounds and traded with the world from the ports of Adulis and subsequently Massawa were the gateway of the Ethiopian Empire. One of the earliest holy mosques in the world is the holy Islamic faith centre, Negash built before many Muslim nations had a mosque. The Ottomans who attempted to colonise Ethiopia were defeated buy Emperor Yohannes and Ras Alula. Ethiopian forces defeated the Italian army at Mequelle on 21 Jan 1986 and at Adwa on first of March 1896.

Adwa has become a quintessential emblem and a pedestal for Pan-Africanism – an important political form of a religious Pan-Africanist worldview appeared in the form of Ethiopianism. Ethiopia still stands as one of the un-colonised nation in Africa.

Pertaining to the aforementioned summarized issue the Ethiopian Herald had a moment of togetherness with Costantinos Berhutesfa Costantinos, PhD Chief Scout, Ethiopian scout Association &President, Lem Ethiopia. He is author of thee book Unleashing African Resilience pertaining to the Rationale behind Teaching & Studying Ethiopian History, some excerpts

What is the significance of giving Ethiopian History courses?

Costantinos

I am not a historian, but as a citizen, I have had the chance to learn and read Ethiopia historical narratives in school and during my professional life. The current deluge of historical novels and books also serves an opportunity to read more. First, let me summarise the highlights of the culmination of our three thousand-year historical narratives teaching in a few paragraphs. This will help why Ethiopian children of all nations and nationalities who need to appreciate and be proud of our historical narratives that every adult of my age has learned in school.

Three thousand years ago, Axum was the seat of the earliest Ethiopian kingdom and one of the holiest grounds and traded with the world from the ports of Adulis and subsequently Massawa were the gateway of the Ethiopian Empire. One of the earliest holy mosques in the world is the holy Islamic faith centre, Negash built before many Muslim nations had a mosque. The Ottomans attempt to colonise Ethiopia were defeated buy Emperor Yohannes and Ras Alula. Ethiopian forces defeated the Italian army at Mequelle on 21 Jan 1986 and at Adwa on first of March 1896.

What is the imperative to teach our children Ethiopian History?

Costantinos

Peter N. Stearns of the American Historical Association, in his article why study history, undergirds the fact that history helps us understand people and societies, the importance of history in our own lives, history contributes to moral understanding, history provides identity, studying history is essential for good citizenship and history is useful in the world of work. Some argue that history has been justified for reasons that Africans no longer accept – history that was thought as if it were the narrative of its colonisers and rulers but not of its people. Nevertheless, we have narratives that our children must learn

More than any other nation, Axum became the Seat of the earliest Ethiopian kingdom and one of the holiest grounds, the Church of St. Mary of Zion. The Holy Mosque of Negash built before many Muslim nations had one and the earliest monasteries established by the “Nine Saints” who spread the gospel are found in Ethiopia. The Ottomans attempt to colonise Ethiopia were defeated by Emperor Yohannes and Ras Alula in Gundet and Gurae. As the area through which all trade and communi­cations passed to and from the ports of Adulis and subsequently Massawa were the gateway of the Ethiopian Empire.

During 1890s, the relation be­tween Ethiopia under Emperor Men­elique and Italy rapidly deteriorated because of the Treaty of Wuchalle. Ulti­mately, an advance party of Ras Alula, Ras Mekonnen, Ras Mikael and Ras Wolle and a number of commanders was dis­patched to join Ras On 7 Dec 1895, Ethiopia gained her first victory at Amba Alage, and forces successively defeated the invading army at Mequelle on 21 Jan 1986 and at Adwa on 1st of March, 1896.

Adwa has become a quintessential emblem and a pedestal for Pan-Africanism – an important political form of a religious Pan-Africanist worldview appeared in the form of Ethiopianism. Ethiopia’s African diasporic religious symbolism grew in the 1800s among blacks in the US and the Caribbean, through a reading of Psalm 68:31, Ethiopia shall soon stretch forth its hands unto God, as a prophesy that God would redeem Africa and free the enslaved.

Our quintessential narratives are priceless and hence, every child must learn this.

Does the stoppage of the course is ascribable to the current political chaos– a generation that does not have an inkling about its roots and bickers over ethnic lines.

Costantinos

Historical narratives of this great nation such as that of Axum, Adwa, Gonder, Harar, Lalibella, etc., written well, serve as our as our practicum that generate information of our past and teach us where we came from and as our most dynamic evidence in the unavoidable quest to figure out who we are. Ethiopians have common folklore, legends and battle narratives through which they have invested in their culture with meaning and value.

The bygones causes the contemporaneous, and so the forthcoming. Historical narratives teach us real resolve on our current level of comprehension, narratives that unpack how our ancestors kept the nation in one piece, thrived despite external and internal wars, and inform us of how these ancestors lived in various epochs of Ethiopian history.

It is a grave error of not schooling our children with these facts in mind.

Every country put its history as a common /core course (such a case is there in America or China or Russia), assessing past trends (during your generation and EPRDF’s Era) how do you analyse the polarity between our common history and revolutionary ideology

Costantinos

In identifying the three-thousand year historic national tradition as an obstacle for revolutionary democracy, the regime equates the problems posed within the provisos of the social democracy doctrine. Committed by its nature of its political struggle to such standards and ideals, it portrayed the three millennia old narrative as an inherent impediment to pluralism. In place of people established through collective memory and effective history, it desired a nation constructed through concepts and formulae of revolutionary democracy. The issues of political transition it articulates in this context can therefore be seen in part as whatever it states within its ideological problematic, whether its formulation of the issues have anything to do or not with the democratic transition.

Indeed, it may be little more than a setting for experimenting with the themes of inter alia, abolition of class oppression and ethnic precincts created against conventional norms of regional administration. Collective memories must then give way to ideology as a basis of national sentiments and instincts and be replaced by revolutionary argument and justification. Following the lead of the radical student inspired movements of the seventies; its rationality rejected tradition in favour of forms of contemporary nationalism based on themes of self-determination and state capitalism.

I have been on record undergirding the fact that this claim of reductionism in approach to historical narratives along with the naïvely rationalist criticism that goes with it is predicated on the polarity it draws between historically sedimented values, sentiments and symbols, on the one hand. On the other hand contemporary ideas of self-determination based on a dualism of effective history and radical ideology. This polarisation is indefensible in its assumption that the two forms of national experience are mutually exclusive; hence, the arguments it is based on, becomes untenable. Political issues of self-determination inevitably raise problems, which cannot be neatly enslaved within either any one of these ethnic groups or contemporary ideology. While they constitute more or less distinct cultural arena, one cannot conclude they can be seen in isolation from or in opposition to issues of historic tradition.

They constitute broader national elements, intersections, consequences and forms of national experience that are not necessarily incompatible and need not be in conflict. Rather, they are mutually paired. They need not be defined in terms of individual schemes or aggregate of them, but addressed within board-based multi-ethnic process. The commitment to progressive ideas of pluralism and ethnic quality does not compel the use of ethnocentric nationalism in a way that devalues and negates national traditions. The commitment to pluralism does not necessarily entail a rejection of our ancestral heritage. If historic nationalism cannot be said to have a core tradition shared by all ethnic groups, neither, can it be characterised as entirely lacking in elements that cut across and connect diverse communities.

The polarity between historical and ideological basis of our unity can serve a useful critical purpose of evaluating the values and assumptions of citizens against the categories and models of liberationist nationalism. It can help to emphasise the point that its collective memory and experience as a nation should not constitute a drag. Nonetheless, this is not possible so long as the trendiness construes, as it does, the relation between historical and ideological bases in simple opposition terms and attempts to limit historic perception entirely to the present. The problem with the exposé of the tradition as a problem for democratic change, then, is that certain processes, implicitly or explicitly, prevent that tradition from entering into meaningful dialogue with extant politics. The former is excluded from the latter or figure-in only in the overly politicised usage of despotic chauvinism, merely as a target of deconstruction.

Oppression of nationalities has been made the defining characteristic, the sum-total of national tradition, but Ethiopians have folklore, legends and battle narratives through which they have invested in their culture with meaning and value. These have been subjected to materialist criticism from the perspective of scientific standards of historical truth as if they were simply epistemological categories and concurrently dismissed as lacking footing in historical facts.

Belatedly, the historical-ideological polarity has placed a heavy emphasis on ethnic diversities rather than commonalities. This over-emphasis really, is the other side of the equally over-politicised identification in the phrase of the student movement, a prison of nations, hence, the demand the nation to be born again, and born different through self-determination. It would be a faux pas, however, to suggest that this demand, along with the highly negative and overly politicised view of the historical process of state formation on which it is based, constitutes the spontaneous response of communities to their incorporation into the polity. It is not necessarily democratic or popular. No one entire ethnic community in Ethiopia has ever been locked in combat with another or with the state in an all-out struggle for ethnic cleansing or liberation. To mention a few narratives.

EPRDF had tried to replace it with civic courses. How do you see this? Does Civic courses help in better fighting out corruption? Must the two courses be given parallel?

Costantinos

Beyond platitudes and good intentions, many civil institutions cannot participate in dialogue with states because they lack the personnel with requisite skills and facilities such as research centres and Think Tanks, to inform their arguments or present credible data to support their assertions. Far more critical in determining both the level and quality of dialogue between states and civil society is the political and economic context in which states find themselves. The context for dialogue, co-operation and interface between states and people’s and community-based organisations has so far been determined largely by the rules and wishes of the state and the international donor community. African states enjoy limited sovereignty.

Participation in citizenship is the basis of all other forms of participation in development. Divorced from participation in citizenship, the concept of popular participation in development becomes a mere administrative strategy– a callous manipulation of the innocent and ignorant even if the result might be a “successful project” – but the end can never morally justify the means. Sadly, much of the current jargon about popular participation is based on the administrative desire for project success and effectiveness. Hence, the need for civic education.

True, the evidence for this assertion is the virtual absence of civic education training as a key component of many development programmes and projects. It is the fundamental argument that civic education, learning about and appreciating one’s rights, duties, obligations and responsibilities as a citizen and the immediate rules, laws and governance structures within which one exercises citizenship is the first and fundamental step in citizenship. Without it, Ethiopia will make no significant headway either with new strategies for development or with its tentative lurch towards democratic governance. Democracy could easily degenerate into anarchy if popular participation in citizenship is not viewed as a critical factor in development and democratic governance without popular participation in citizenship.

Nonetheless, one must question the content of the civic education curriculum if they at all address the above assertions and see if the two courses can be given in parallel.

 What is your view on Corruption

Recent allegations of day light robbery of state funds, embezzlement, loan fraud and graft in government institutions have brought the issue of corruption to a new level of alarm. While some economists argue that sleaze fuels the markets of major economies such as the developmental states of the tiger economies; corruption, in all its manifestation, remains a major obstacle to efforts to install and consolidate a developmental system. The organisational imperative of the bureaucratic machine is to command and control, preoccupied with its own survival and enrichment, as the state is the main channel for securing privileged position in society. Corruption cannot be seen in isolation, as its effects permeate societies, and in turn, societal attitudes can either encourage or discourage corruption.

While the prime role of the state in advancing the economy, reducing state involvement in the economy, streamlining the discretionary decision-making authority of its officials, eliminate monopolies and economic distortions that facilitate them and improve accountability. Leadership, political will and public support are essential to the success of stemming any threats of corruption, and that the causes and not just the consequences of these threats have to be addressed. Upholding the rule of law is important to guarantee protection of human rights, ensure judicial predictability.

Creating a merit based and metric civil service is a basic requirement for limiting any threats of corruption and rebuilding public confidence. A culture of professionalism needs to be created and thus, incentives as well as sanctions have to be employed.

Watchdogs are significant components of this strategy can help increase integrity and transparency. Active involvement of civil society is a sine qua non as corruption thrives on secrecy, which countered by an investigative free press that counteracts public perceptions that corruptions inevitable and important people are immune from investigative journalism. Experience has shown that preventing and combating corruption requires a consistent, coherent, broad-based approach and a long-term perspective, as there are collateral damages of counter corruption measures that can stumble on legal protection of constitutionally defined rights.

What should be the trend down the road here in Ethiopia?

Costantinos

To conclude, historical narratives provide a terrain for moral contemplation, reflecting on the stories of individuals and situations in the past allows our children to test their own moral sense, to hone it against some of the real complexities individuals have faced in difficult settings. People who have weathered adversity not just in some work of fiction, but also in real, historical circumstances can provide inspiration. Historical narratives also helps provide identity, and this is unquestionably one of the reasons all modern nations encourage its teaching in some form. History provides evidence about how our ancestors and the founding fathers built this great nation, how the conventions they created were formed and about how they have changed while retaining structure.

The fact that the entire Ethiopian people of all nations and nationalities fought against external invaders are great historical narratives that are vital for good citizenship today. The fact that 1974 popular uprising against the regime was not attended by any opposition even from the nobility of the time is evidence of the unity of Ethiopians across religion and ethnicity. The fact that Ethiopians rose ensemble against the Dergue was not because of its ethnicity, but of its megalomaniac character, killing millions in famine and terrors.

If this is not a justification to teach history of a nation built on blood and sweat, a clinic of human experience and of informed citizenship, to our children, then what is?//

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September 19, 2018 · 1:47 pm

Ethiopian History courses must not be underplayed but reconstructed for all inclusiveness

Alem Hailu G/Kristos

Obviously, moving a few steps back helps to surge forward. To outstretch branches towards the sky a seedling has to send deeper roots into the ground. By the same token to actualize a renaissance a nation that was once great has to fathom its rooting. But sad as it may sound, The Ethiopian History courses were underplayed for close three decades. In cognizance of this fact, This journalist had approached historians and celebrities about what is the significance of digesting one’s history and repercussions in underplaying it as well as ways forward?

Costantinos Berehe, Chief Scout,Ethiopian Scout Association started explanation about the issue quoting Peter N.Stearns of the American Historical Association “History wants us to understand people and societies as well as the importance of history in our lives. History contributes to moral understanding,history provides identity,studying history is essential for good citizenship and history is important in the world of work.”

Regarding the stoppage of the common course in universities and high schools in Ethiopia and attempts made to downsize it from three thousand years to a century he said “Historical narrative of this great nation such as that of Axum,Adwa, Gonder, Harar Lalibela,etc,written well, serve as our practicum that generate information of our past and teach us where we came from and as our most dynamic evidence in the unavoidable quest to figure out where we are.”

He added, Ethiopians have common folklore,legends and battle narratives through which they have invested in their culture with meaning and value. The bygones causes the contemporaneous and so the forthcoming.

He noted “Historical narratives teach us real resolve on our current level of comprehension, narratives that unpack how our ancestors kept the nation in one piece,thrived despite internal and external wars and inform us how these ancestors lived in various epochs of Ethiopian History. Hence,it is a grave error not schooling our children with this facts in mind.”

According to Costantinos historical narratives provide a terrain for moral contemplation. “Reflecting on the stories of individuals and situations in the past allows our children to test their past. It also allows our children to test their ancestors and how the founding fathers built this great nation, how the conventions they created were formed and about how they have changed while retaining structure.”

Brushing aside ethnic and religious differences and closing ranks, how Ethiopians annihilated invaders is a great historical narratives that is vital for good citizenship today. The fact that 1974 popular uprising against the regime was not attended by any opposition even from the nobility of the time is evidence of the unity of Ethiopians across religion and ethnicity. The fact that Ethiopians rose ensemble against the Dergue was not because of its ethnicity, but of its megalomaniac character, killing millions in famine and terrors.

He underlined the rationale behind teaching & studying Ethiopian History with If this is not a justification to teach history of a nation built on blood and sweat, a clinic of human experience and of informed citizenship, to our children, then what is?”

Getish Worku was a history and Ethics & Civic education teacher. He is a journalist now. He said like other disciplines, history is not simply a course that is delivered at colleges or universities for the sake of teaching and learning process. It is beyond that. For a country with three thousands years history, every student must know the value of the subject. History is not all about learning the past. It is a mirror of the past to see better future. Nations of the world, which gave value to history, have still kept their economic and political position. Those countries who learnt well from their history have become lands of tolerance and their economies have flourished. Ethiopia is a land with lots of history. “Whenever we hear the ancient civilization of Rome, Greek or Egypt mentioned, Ethiopia`s name is always there. This implies that the more we capitalize on the history of the nation, the more we can build better Ethiopia. This is specially true for the generation in the pipeline that wrongly prefers to know more about the history of the West instead of theirs.”

Dr Johachim Persoon,Assoc Professor Art Schoolof Fine School said

I had heard that the history department here is almost closed and there is hardly any student studying history. I understand the introduction of the federal system of administration has caused issues and challenges for teaching Ethiopian History. So, I think it is obvious that the teaching of history is a little bit problematic. It needs to be rethought. History is very important for citizens to understand themselves and the society. It is a big mistake not to teach history. The fear of controversial issue may have been factor in not teaching Ethiopian History. When it comes to the Ethiopian Context they should teach history. They should rethink how to rewrite it.”

Responding to the question why to rewrite it he said “In any case, normally history is not finished. There is a continuous procesDr Johachim Persoons of reviewing. Every country rewrites its own history from different perspectives. We are in post modernism ear. We have to deconstruct history to reconstruct it. The important thing is not undermining the existing but enriching the narrative from different perspectives. Ethiopian History is full of warriors’ chronicle and history of churches. There are a lot of elements of history not explored. So it is important opening new ways of viewing it from different perspectives. Traditionally there was hegemonic political systems in which the centre determines every thing. As such the peripheries used to be neglected. There is a call for doing more research on this to shed light on the peripheries and to make history all inclusive. The historic discourse should take into account the contemporary political situation,administration and ways of government. Ethiopia now has a federal eDr Johachim Persoonthnicity system of government the way of relation to this should take into account giving some reference to different ethnic cultural and sociocultural history.

Responding to the question EPRDF had opted to replace it with civic courses. How do you see this? Must the two courses be given parallel

Getish said on the other hand, when we talk about Civic and Ethical education we are talking about creating morally responsible citizens. But, the problem is the subject had been misused to promote the agenda of the ruling political party instead of promoting genuine moral and ethical principles.

History and Civic& Ethical Education have to go hand-in-hand. A Civic and Ethical educator who does not properly know the history of his/her country can not properly convey messages to his students.

This is specially true in times where teachers` activities is dictated by political cadres in the school or college. If a given civic teacher has no concrete foundation about the history of his country, s/he could not build a strong, patriotic and morally responsible students. If s/he can not balance what s/he teaches s/he will kill a generation.

S/he has to tell students both good and bad sides of the past regimes. For instance, in order to build the image of a ruling party, the previous regime must not be portrayed as a monster. In this regard, it is my firm belief that both History and Civic & ethical Education educations have to run in a balanced manner.

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Normally history is not finished there is a continuous process of reviewing

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