Kleptocracy in Ethiopia  

TPLF ethno-centric dictatorial rule violated Ethiopians people rights with impunity, plundered the national resources. The power of the gun, deception, divide and rule, is the regime's survival skill. TPLF’s army and secret service are well equipped to silence opposition and to commit ethnic cleansing. The vicious troops (Agaize) machine gunned many moredefenseless innocent people for expressing their rights. No one held accountable for this dreadful atrocities to date. Theethnic cleansing that fostered by TPLF would monumental challenge that need be solved by future Peoples Government.
Several attempts was made to create ethnic animosities and distrust, but have not resonated to ordinary people.

The associated political parties seem to offer no political treat to TPLF regime, they simply serving the interest of TPLF ethno-centric dictatorial rule. They are de facto agents in facilitating information gathering, and implementing at TPLF's will the exploitation to continue. They do everything to maintain their flow of crumbs and gurash to remain uninterrupted.  The large scale corruption also opened up a new military class.  It is an open secret the TPLF’s military Generals are running wild and succumbed to corruption and getting easy money, and purchasing expensive villas in foreign capitals through relative’s names. The political cronies do the same and corruption become norm nowadays and cannot be deterred. Manipulation judicial institutions also the most brazen form of getting rich. The clerk and judges accept bribes in broad day light from plaintiffs or defendants. Any extortion appeals from ordinary citizen ignored or caused them to be thrown in jails.

The absence of democratic rights, and economic inequalities, massive corruption etc. creates discontent eventually will lead to all out uprising. Our forefathers fought and won freedom in the past, and took great personal risks to keep us free from foreign aggression. We are now fighting to free ourselves from different type of enemy (ethno-centric rulers) that has no respect for past history and attempt to kill a sense of nation hood of the people. This new enemy primary is driven in creating non-viable ethnic states and provoking ethnic conflicts. They pursued divide and rule policy to perpetuate undemocratic rule and disguise their large scale corruption to continue.  The corruption is flourishing mainly through endowments enterprises such as EFFORT and GUNA. It is evident that most of the corruptions are concentrated in critical sectors, such as infrastructure projects, farm land lease, and government procurement, to name a few.  In the absence of competitive political process and free press, theft, kickbacks, and briberies will have no end.  There is almost no law to enforce since laws are written to support the regime party and corrupt cronies. Since misappropriation and embezzlement done as virtual mafia states how much the country wealth stolen will never be known.

It is clear that the stolen money can be used to lift people out of poverty, to create jobs, to stop plight of young generation to Middle East countries, enrich social program and many more. Ethiopia indeed could be easily listed of the top of Kleptocrats in the world. As we all remember in 2010, in an attempt to legitimize its dictatorial rule, the regime organized a parliamentary election that made it next to impossible for opposition parties to mobilize their supports. At the end, Meles boasted and declared he won parliamentary seats with 99.6%. But it is a well known fact it is done with his iron-fisted rule, not with democratic process. On other hand, I would say a major uprising appeared to be imminent as long as one party with an iron grip continues to rule.

Meles’s dark legacy resembles with many world dictators. As example I simply equate Meles to late Chilean dictator Pinochet. Pinochet was supported by western governments for advancing "free market policies”, “privatizing state owned industries”, “economic growth”, etc.by ignoring all his human rights violations.  But by the time his rule end , Pinochet was humiliated, charges relating to widespread human rights violations, killings and disappearances, personal corruption and many more other crimes. Meles is also the head of TPLF ethno-centric dictatorial rule, known as a notorious symbol of human rights abuse, the architect of ethnic cleansing, and corruption. He quashed 2005 free election, which were marred by indiscriminate killing and thousands of the opposition group and sympathizers were jailed and brutally interrogated. Mele’s also claims economic growth similar to Pinochet rule. It is no secret Ethiopia is the largest aid recipient in Sub-Saharan Africa and one of the four largest recipients (3 billion per year), millions of dollars are pouring to the country through remittances by Diaspora. The majority citizen living style and income no better off today than previous Ethiopian rulers. Given this well-known fact and adding the Illicit outflow money at a massive scale, nobody trusts Meles’s double digits growth statistics, which are manipulated. We are certain he will have the same fate as Chilean dictator, history repeats itself, as say but prolonging Ethiopia’s agony in every aspect is our present concern.

It is sad to see TPLF ethno-centric dictatorial rule taking the country backward at alarming speed. We know that life is neither easy nor equal. But we cannot afford to remain as onlookers where ethnic cleansing encouraged by regime, where competitive political process non-existence, society freedom curtailed, and where regime makes corruption a way of life. We also knew that when too much power vests in one person or a few the results are tragedies. The opposition parties and the activists must redouble the effort to help the grassroots movement and to spark a social uprising for regime change. One thing is certain, the oppressed people’s force that never anticipated would join as activists advances people causes as seen recently in Tunisia, Egypt or other places.

Ewnetu Sime