NY/NJ Ethiopians Task Force
In Amharic, the national language of Ethiopia, “Andargachew” is equivalent to “unify them.” Andy is a beloved hero to millions of Ethiopians who believe that he risked his life fighting to free them from the shackles of a minority regime that established an apartheid-like system designed to control the majority and loot the country. He was determined to sacrifice his life to fight for liberty because he was selfless, caring and passionate about his country and was troubled by deteriorating human rights conditions.
Andargachew Tsige, or as many refer to him, “Andy,” left his beloved wife, Yemi, and his three beautiful kids and went back home from London after the fall of the military regime in 1991. He was hoping to participate in the political process and help his country move forward. Soon after, he was stunned by the ignorance, arrogance, recklessness, corruption and brutality of the TPLF leaders that took power, brokered by donor nations including the US and Britain. With a continued hope to bring a democratic system, he joined his compatriot, professor Berhanu Nega, in the Coalition of Unity and Democracy party and participated in the election of 2005, where Ethiopians unequivocally rejected the regime. In a twisted turn of events, he and his friends were thrown into jail by the TPLF for winning elections and the TPLF remained in power illegally via imprisoning, torturing and killing Ethiopians.
While the TPLF crew spent years in the jungle fighting the military junta in the name of freedom, Andy witnessed the fact that they had no clue about freedom. That observation prompted him write a book entitled, “ነጻነት የማያቁ የነጻነት ታጋዮች”, which translates to, “The freedom fighters who have no clue about freedom.” Indeed, TPLF leaders do seem to think like the pigs in animal farm, who thought that if the pigs get all the food and live a good life, then every other animal should be ok. Ethiopians know that the TPLF era is full of restrictions to free press, freedom of expression, freedom of movements, etc. The only thing that became free under the TPLF is death, torture, displacement, corruption and deplorable living conditions for millions of citizens.
As they have tried every peaceful way of protest, Andy and his friend Berhanu Nega understood the motives of TPLF leaders very well. They understood early on that the TPLF will try to strengthen its divide and rule, it will move on to strengthen an ethnocentric regime where the Tigres dominate the economic, political and military power in the country. That was not acceptable to Andy and his friends, and they were determined to give their lives to fight for Ethiopians and their beloved country. They were determined to stop the madness of a minority regime via any means necessary, including political, diplomatic and arms struggle. That was why Andy and his compatriots came together and established the now populous freedom fighting group “Ginbot-7,” which later became “Patriotic Ginbot-7.”
Since its establishment “Ginbot-7” has been a formidable challenge to the TPLF. Along with other politicians and activists, Ginbot-7 leaders were instrumental in exposing TPLF atrocities and the TPLF’s extreme corruptions, including TPLF owned businesses, to the world. They were instrumental in educating Ethiopians in and out of the country about the ill wills of the TPLF regime. It is no secret that corrupt TPLF leaders fear these guys. The TPLF will do anything to stop them. That was what happened on the 23rd of June 2014. The TPLF payed millions of dollars to officials of another corrupt government, “Yemen,” to abduct Andy from the airport while he was on transit. Even though they were able to abduct Andy, one thing the TPLF did not realize at the time was that it was already too late for them, as Andy has created a movement that is determined to teach the looters the meaning of real freedom.
The sad thing is that those TPLF leaders that are despised and known by most Ethiopians as killers and looters are enjoying the wealth they have taken from poor Ethiopians while the real Freedom Fighter, “Andy,” is languishing in prison. It is not fair to keep the real freedom fighter in prison, while the ones who fought to loot are at large.
We demand that Prime Minster Abiye Ahmed release our hero, Andargachew Tsige, ASAP. Andy deserves his freedom, Andy deserves to be with his family, and more than ever, Ethiopians need Andy to help them defeat the TPLF and obtain freedom and democracy.
Free Andargachew Tsige
Down with the TPLF and Long Live Ethiopia
NY/NJ Ethiopians Task Force (www.ethionynj.com)