By Paul Ejime
Abiy Ahmed, as Interim Prime Minister and a 2019 Nobel Peace Laureate, decided in Nov. 2020 to declare a war he thought he could win in a few weeks, against fellow Ethiopians in Tigray, north of the country.
This was against every wise counsel. But by last June 2021, Ahmed was forced to declare a unilateral ceasefire, largely because Ethiopian forces were suffering deadly reverses in battle.
Ahmed was recently elected substantive PM, but the Ethiopia-Tigray war he ordered has claimed thousands of Ethiopian lives, with hundreds of thousands of others displaced amid underreported atrocities/war crimes committed. The conflict has now spread to other regions. Ethiopia is adrift to its notorious past of starvation and humanitarian disaster.
After Amed’s national embarrassment of a retreat/defeat, he is now calling on long-suffering/helpless Ethiopian civilians to join him in continuation of the senseless perdition – another war against fellow Ethiopians in Tigray!
How many Ethiopian lives would it take for a reason to prevail, or to satisfy the desire of a ruler? Was Ahmed’s Peace honour a fluke?
Sadly, the international community, and more shockingly, the African Union, which has its headquarters in Addis Ababa, the Ethiopian capital, appear missing in action!
Meanwhile, as criticisms mount against the African Union, African Regional Economic Communities (RECs) and many African leaders for the telling leadership deficiency that has kept the continent on the lower rung of human development indices, the leadership of the Addis Ababa-based African Union has invited upon itself a needless controversy by granting Israel an Observer membership status!
The critics argue that this is hardly a priority at a time when Africa and its 1.3 billion people are burdened with poverty, unemployment, insecurity, terrorism/jihadist insurrections, and socio-economic and political governance challenges compounded by the COVID-19 pandemic.