By Tedla Asfaw
Recently numbers are “produced” discussing ethnicity and religion in Ethiopia with no one checking facts. I heard Dr. Megersa on Oromo TV in Minnesota telling us the “victims” of red and white terrors in Ethiopia Eighty percent of them were “Oromos”. Eighty percent of Ethiopian Muslims are “Oromos” according to the “book” of Jawar Mohamed. Where did they get those numbers ? Journalists pick such figures and confuse the public. Both Megersa and Jawar are biased actors, their claim is not supported by local/Ethiopian as well as foreign historians.
Professor Fekadu Lemessa with whom most likely studied Agricultural Engineering in Alemaya/Haramya in 1980s has done his part to counter the numbers coming out from Minnesota.http://ecadforum.com/2013/07/29/fiction-and-facts-on-oromos-of-ethiopia/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=twitter&utm_campaign=Feed%3A+ecadforum%2FHv. When it comes to red and white terror victims, there are studies and websites who compiled the names of the victims of the red terror. It is time to rebuke the claim of Dr.Megersa.
We are living in a fast information age where numbers are used rightly and wrongly. Numbers are used by anti Ethiopia elements for “propaganda” to divide Ethiopians by ethnicity and religion, create tension according to the designers.They care less for the people they claim they are speaking on their behalf because they are living sound and safe in the West with their own families and can not be impacted by their action.
In a civilized world there is always census every ten or so years to study communities where numbers are used to address legitimate issues. In poor and undemocratic country like Ethiopia where ethnicity is the force to rule by division journalists have to check their facts.
Professor Fekadu Lemessa’s “Oromo 101” helps foreigners as well as locals/Ethiopians interested to educate and empower the people of Ethiopia, including Oromos.