Gosaye Ethiopia Movement (GEM) Press Release-Gosaye Ethiopia Movement (GEM) categorically condemns the recent arrest of pro-Democracy Oromo opposition leader Dr. Merera Gudina. The TPLF ruling party illegally detained the popular politician and AAU professor Dr. Gudina after he returned to Ethiopia following his speech at the European Parliament. He was in Brussels at the invitation of EU MP Ana Gomez.
According to the one-party TPLF dictatorship in Addis Ababa, Dr. Gudina’s crime was sitting next to Dr. Berhanu Nega, leader of the militant Patriotic Ginbot 7 (PG7) organization. TPLF’s rationale is incomprehensible since many diplomats and embassy officials in Addis Ababa have one time or another made similar contact with the respected Dr. Berhanu Nega as well.
If Dr. Merera Gudina is not released soon, the TPLF regime will be held responsible for any future bloodshed, as the Oromo and other oppressed people of Ethiopia respond in opposition. Dr. Gudina, who mobilized tens of millions of Oromos during the election, belongs in parliament not in solitary confinement.
Gosaye Ethiopia Movement (GEM) demands the unconditional release of Dr. Merera Gudina and other leaders of the Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC) party. The GEM also asks the European Union to stop financing the TPLF dictatorship. The European Development Fund (EDF) has given TPLF billions of dollars for Ethiopian economy and foreign aid toward “food security,” despite Ethiopians facing starvation in recurring famines. The EU Commission’s own Joint Research Centre has previously accused TPLF of economic data manipulation and the decrease of emergency food stockpiles from year to year despite increasing assistance from EU. Therefore, the EU has neither the political nor humanitarian justification to continue funding the TPLF tyranny.
Dr. Merera Gudina is not just any other pro-democracy leader, he is a progressive and moderate figure in the Oromo opposition movement, with an unflinching dedication to the noble causes of nonviolent resistance, individual rights and unity amongst all ethnic groups of Ethiopia. He is well-known for his scholarly work on Ethiopian history that embraces the patriotic contributions of ethnic Oromos to the formation and development of the Ethiopian polity during the 1700s and for centuries before.
Therefore, the regime’s crackdown on the democratic and peaceful Oromo opposition parties is a sign that the TPLF separatists want to empower Oromo hardliners, to destabilize the Horn of Africa. All Ethiopians and the international community should condemn the detention of Dr. Merera Gudina and his colleagues.
The G.E.M. is a worldwide advocacy group for millions of mixed ‘ethnic Ethiopians,’ who are marginalized under the current regime in Addis Ababa. Ethnic Ethiopians are the largest ethnic group in Ethiopia.