Gambella Nilotes United Movement/Army
September 13th 2014, Gambella
Gambella Nilotes United Movement (GNUM) strongly condemns the massacre of Mezenger tribe which is currently carried out jointly by the federal police forces and the illegal settlers (highlanders) in Metti town Godere Zone of the Gambella region, started in September 11/2014. The Majengers were unaware of the pre-planned massacre are now helpless and vulnerable in the situation, and so far more than 17 Majengers are reported dead and the killing is indiscriminate against children, women and men, among which, one is said to be the zonal governor. Still the killing apparently is spreading into many villages, not knowing the scale of the incident to the villagers.
The Majengers have been in constant conflicts and frustration with the illegal settlers from the north, and the loss of land has been in alarming rates as clearing of the forests by commercial investors and the illegal settlers continue to surge. They have endured many incidents of such kind in the past in Tepi town in which many lives were lost in the town and the surroundings villages before they retreated to Godere district.
The TPLF government has been recklessly pressing the tribe to give up their fertile land to the highlanders and the commercial investors. This year alone in June to July 2014 some conflicts were instigated by the government in relation to land grabs and some Majengers were killed, cattle looted, and some leaders and elders thrown into jail in different part of the district.
GNUM has been aware that the Ethiopian federal police and the Ethiopian National Defence Forces (ENDF) have been very instrumental in instigating racist conflicts in the TPLF governing against the indigenous Nilotes in the region, and their role always is to make sure they flush out the indigenous populations from their ancestral lands in favour of highlanders. The indigenous Nilotes don’t enjoy freedom and equality as they continue to suffer discrimination against their colour and race in the country. They are seen inferior, less citizens, less humans of not deserving any right to acquire properties and prosperity as other citizens do, even in their own lands.
It is with these convictions that GNUM is determined to fight for equality and freedom for the indigenous Nilotes to ensure their full recognition and identity in their land. The TPLF government is a racist government that puts ethnic conflicts as means to prosper its own people to settle in the southwest regions. It is a government that cares for all its citizens, and it should be resisted strongly by all means as racist and divisive.
Therefore, GNUM would like to call upon all the indigenous Nilotes to unite themselves as one people. Resistance should be encouraged and strengthened against this racist government to protect the livelihood of the indigenous populations. Our land, as indigenous peoples, should be known as source of our livelihood. We should be determined to protect this right at all cost. As the TPLF government continues to putting up all efforts foolishly to make sure the indigenous populations languish in blood to wipe them away from their ancestral lands, its dream cannot come to prosper.
GNUM strongly believe that time is running short for the TPLF government to vanish like smoke. We urge all Nilotes to maintain all the traditional source of courage and moral to fight back this tyrrany enemy. Our integrity and rights before God in the land are more than any weapon to defeat. Time is coming to claim back what it has taken from the indigenous peoples. For this we want to ensure the Majengers that you are not alone. We share your grief and death for your ancestral land and your innocent bloodshed in your own land has loudly communicated cry for your freedom and justice before God. GNUM will stand with you always.
GNUM also call upon the international community to investigate the killings of Majengers through neutral body, and cause the perpetrators to be brought to justice. We call upon all the donors to withhold their funds from the TPLF government to make sure their funds are not used to perpetuate the killings against the innocent indigenous populations. Further, we also strongly ask the international community to analyse and make serious investigation toward the root cause of the increasing killings against the indigenous populations in southwest Ethiopia and come up with strong recommendations and actions for maximum self determination as the only lasting solution to protect the life of the indigenous populations.
In conclusion the Gambella Nilotes United Movement (GNUM) will continue it struggle for all people of Gambella and South-western Nilotes to ensure freedom, liberty, justice, security and prosperity are brought to people in their God given lands.