A senior member of the Coalition for Unity and Democracy Party (Kinijit), Dr Yacob Hailemariam, has informed his colleagues that he will not present himself for the top leadership of the party after the general meeting this coming weekend.
The main reason Dr Yacob, an international legal expert who had prosecuted genocide suspects in Rwanda, is that the Meles regime in Ethiopia has left open no political space in the country for opposition parties to operate. Dr Yacob, however, will remain as member of UDJ, according to ER sources.
This coming weekend, UDJ will hold its general assembly meeting to decide how the party should move forward and to also elect new leaders. So far, five of the party’s most senior leaders, Ato Muluneh Eyoel, Dr Befikadu Degife, Prof. Mesfin Woldemariam, Dr Yacob Hailemariam, and Ato Seleshi Tena, have made their intention clear not be part of the leadership, citing the extremely hostile political climate in the country created by the U.S.-financed dictatorship of Meles Zenawi.
The decision made by Dr Yacob, Ato Muluneh and others not to play a leadership role under the circumstances demonstrates their high moral character and integrity.
The other UDJ leaders need to make the same decision, and suspend all their activities in Ethiopia. They need to also withdraw the application they submitted to the fake election board, tear it apart and put it in a trash bin as a form of protest.
Suspending their operation doesn’t mean disbanding the party. It only means that they do not accept and submit to Woyanne’s lawlessness.
This coming weekend, at the party’s general assembly, UDJ needs to demonstrate that it stands for the rule of law, and represents the interests of the people of Ethiopia by doing the right thing — do not give legitimacy to the Woyanne fascist regime. Instead, the UDJ general assembly can do the following:
1) Pass a resolution stating that the Meles dictatorship has no mandate to govern and must step down.
2) Decide that UDJ will not operate inside Ethiopia as a political party due to the gross political repression. Suspend all of the party’s operations, except informal meetings, and occasional press statements exposing Woyanne’s crimes.
3) Release all Kinijit support committees around the world from their obligation to UDJ so that the support committees will decide their own future course of action — preferably joining the Ginbot 7 Movement while maintaining their legal status as Kinijit support committees.
It must be noted here that Ginbot 7 is a political movement and it has only one mission — to remove Woyanne and install a transitional government with a 2-year term. UDJ could reclaim its name, Kinijit, and participate in that election, and the support committees would play a major role at that time. For now there is nothing they can do. Other organizations that are rallying behind or creating alliances with Ginbot 7 can do the same thing when a fair and free election is held after Woyanne is eliminated.