How is the OLF /AFD different from the TPLF/EPRDF?

"Press Statement May 22, 2006: A historic meeting convened by the Coalition for Unity and Democracy Party (CUDP), the Ethiopian People's Patriotic Front (EPPF), the Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), the Sidama Liberation Front (SLF) and the United Ethiopian Democratic Forces (UEDF), at Utrecht in the Netherlands, from 19 to 22 of May 2006 has successfully completed by forming the Alliance for Freedom and Democracy (AFD) and elected its officers. The UEDF supports the formation of the alliance and its objectives and has requested a month to consult its member organizations."

As I have indicated in my recent piece we are going to say one thing about the AFD in one day and quite the opposite at another day, and largely because we do not have the information on it. It is an intellectually permissible practice to provide a scenario and use that scenario, by supporting it or disagreeing with it, in order to better understand the issues involved in a discussion. Such a practice is more useful in seeing the AFD objectively, instead of providing support or rejection based on ones proclivities.  The purpose of discussing by providing scenarios is not necessarily to bring objections as it is to understand what the issue is. 

Item 1. The peasants of Ethiopia do not speak English, yet the OLF/AFD requires that the language of documents be written in English, while considering Afaan Oromo, Amharic and English as the common languages.  In contrast, TPLF/EPRDF recognize Amharic as the national language, and permitted others to use their languages.

Item 2. By equating itself with ethnic-centered political parties, has not Kinijit relegated itself to be an ethnic-party in the OLF/AFD soup?  Is not the formation of an OLF/AFD one of the geniuses of the OLF in countering the growth of non-ethnic-based politics, and stifling the efforts of Kinijit? In contrast, the TPLF/EPRDF had at least in the pre-2005 elections allowed the formation and expansion of non-ethnic based parties though it requires them as well as ethnic-based parties to be subservient to it.

Item 3. The TPLF/EPRDF invented a "state" called "Oromia", and they permitted the writing of the language called Afaan Oromo by using the Latin script instead of the Ge'ez; the OLF/AFD is silent on this issue indicating its acquiescence of the conditions invented by the TPLF/EPRDF.

Item 4. Both TPLF and OLF worked hard to support the secession of Eritrea . The TPLF/EPRDF recognizes Eritrea as an independent country and deals with Eritrea with that premise. The OLF/AFD goes farther and states that one of its duties is to " Actively promote good relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea based on the agreement to be reached between the two sister countries" (Ch2, Article 8).

Item 5. Both TPLF and OLF participated in 1991 in a five-day so-called "national conference", which gave the TPLF/EPRDF its charter among other issues.  One of the tasks of the OLF/AFD is to hold a "national conference". Will the TPLF be involved in a second "national conference" and for what purpose; to make English the language for writing documents, to use Afaan Oromo, Amharic, and English as the common languages, and to actively promote good relations with Eritrea ?

Based on the above items, which are extracted from the AFD statute that are given below, is ita correct scenario to suggest that the OLF/AFD is a second in a series of arrangements, with TPLF/EPRDF being the first, by which the EPLF-TPLF dismantle Ethiopia as they work toward the formation Greater Eritrea with Tigrey province being incorporated in Eritrea?

HG 5/28/06
Addendum of 5/29/06: Yesterday, I received a telephone call from a lady who asked me what in the Alliance I do not like? I replied to her that we should all unearth any conceivable objections and bring those to the fore so that we can examine the issues. It is significant to view the good, the bad and the ugly that some might perceive could come from the alliance.  So, I ask all to the unearthing of any bad thing that the alliance might bring so that I might add it to my collection in  The hope is that some of those issues will be resolved amicable and quite readily, some of them by simple offering forgiveness to errors recognized by those who made them and seek forgiveness, others are of historical nature and we merely record them and pass along, yet others will be resolved by the maturing of the alliance.


Dear all,

Information is power. We need all available information on the AFD so that can we might make informed discussions. I copied some of the articles and sections from the bylaws of the AFD and have printed them below. For details point to:


Statues of the Alliance for freedom and Democracy (AFD).

Chapter I - Establishment of the Alliance

A2.Member organizations shall maintain their respective political programs.

A3. The Parties commit themselves to [..] spare no effort to assure that the provisions of the agreement are fully respected and implemented in their letter and spirit..

 A4.a. The documents of the Alliance shaIl be made in English.

A4.b. The official languages of the AIliance are Afaan Oromo, Amharic and English;

A4.d. The AIliance would strive to ensure that all languages and the positive aspects of the cultures they embody receive equal recognition and protection.

 Chapter 11 - Aim of the Alliance

A1.2- Promotes peace in Ethiopia and the region, ensuring that the resulting peace dividend shall be enjoyed by all;

Chapter III - Functions of the Alliance

A2. Convene an inclusive conference to establish a workable arrangement on the basis of

the present framework of the Ethiopian constitution;

A8. Actively promote good relations between Ethiopia and Eritrea based on the agreement to be reached between the two sister countries.

 Chapter IV - Seat of the Alliance

            The Alliance will be established in some city, and may move to other places as necessary.

 Chapter V - Membership

5. Member organizations shall refrain from engaging in activities directed against each other and in any activity that in any way compromises the security of a member organization. Violator of this article is subject to expulsion.

A5.6 Notwithstanding Article 3.5 of this Constitution, member organizations are not prohibited from expounding their political belief, and recruiting their own members in accordance with their respective laws, rules and programs.

A5.7. Member organization shall refrain from engaging in any activity that in any way compromises the security of another member organization.

 A.5.8. Without prejudice to Article 3.6, member organizations may establish bilateral

cooperation to further coordinate their activities.

Chapter VI - Organs of the Alliance

The organs of the Alliance are:

.i.. the Governing Council; and

. ii. the Executive Committee


A2. The Executive Committee may establish other bodies as it deems necessary.


A3. The Governing Council is the highest organ of the Alliance .


A4. b. Each member organization shall be entitled to three representatives on the

Governing Council, and each representative shall be entitled to one vote. The

head of a member organization shall be one of the representatives on the Council.

A4. d. Member organizations may recall their representatives at any time, with or

without case, by giving written notice.


A8. The Governing Council may be convened in special session, upon the initiative either of the Chairman or the written request of at least three member organizations.


Chapter VII - Executive Committee

The Executive Committee shall hold an ordinary meeting once a month.


DONE at (city), this --- the day of May 2006.

2. There shall be a $20,000 annual membership fee.

Chapter XI- Final Provisions

A1. The Statutes may be amended or repealed and new Statutes may be adopted by a 213 vote of the Governing Council at any regular meeting, or at special meeting called for this purpose, provided a written notice and intention of the meeting is conveyed to members.

DONE at (city), this ---