The Ottawa Ethiopian alliance building conference – report

By Elias Kifle

Several Ethiopian political and civic groups held a 3-day conference in Ottawa, Canada, from May 19 – 21, 2012, and forged an alliance named “Congress of Ethiopian People’s United Struggle.”

The alliance was formed after a thorough discussion on problems that have plagued past efforts in forming a viable united front. One of the ideas that have been presented as solution at the Ottawa conference was to involve civic groups and independent individuals in the new alliance.

The conference highlighted the deteriorating economic, social and political conditions in Ethiopia and concluded that an intensified, united, all-inclusive struggle must be waged to save the country from further chaos and calamity.

After reaching an agreement on the objectives and organizational structure of the alliance, a central council — composed of 2 representatives from each civic and political group, plus 5 individuals — has been formed by the conference.

The central council on the same day met and elected its top 4 officers: Dr Ermias Alemu, chairman; Dr Achamyeleh Debela, Vice Chairman, Ato Gidey Zeratsion, Secretary; and Ato Asridew Kebede, Treasurer. The council is expected to form its executive committee in the coming few days.

The conference left 2 seats in the central council for each of those civic groups and political parties that have not yet made a decision to participate. The door is left open for them any time they decide to join.

In a renewed spirit of cooperation and unity, the conference instructed the new leadership to support the formation of the Ethiopian National Transitional Council by sending delegates to the founding convention that is scheduled to take place from June 30 – July 3 in Dallas, Texas.

Like all the other united fronts and coalitions in the past, this new alliance also has a short time to prove itself as a viable opposition coalition. The primary measurement of its viability is the type of actions that it will take in the coming few weeks against the ruling Woyanne junta in Ethiopia, because what the people of Ethiopia are looking for is actions that can help eliminate the Woyanne rule.

All of us who have participated in the conference are indebted to the Ethiopian community in Ottawa that hosted the conference. They worked tirelessly to provide all the logistical support that is needed to conduct a successful conference. Their hospitality is amazing. They represent the Ethiopia that we all fight to save and preserve.

The Ottawa conference was opened by blessings from Christian and Muslim leaders. A representative of the Holy Synod of the Ethiopian Orthodox Church in exile, LiqeKahnat Misale Engida, urged the participants to set aside minor differences and forge a strong unity. He warned: “if you fail to make this conference successful, you will cause more hopelessness and disillusionment among the people.” LiqeKahnat’s warning was in the mind of every one as the participants debated a number of contentious issues.

The legendary Ethiopian fitness expert Girma Cheru was among the prominent individuals who attended the conference and added their voice to the urgency of carrying out a united struggle to save Ethiopia.

15 thoughts on “The Ottawa Ethiopian alliance building conference – report

  1. Jemal,Hudkisvall,Sweden on

    I have wait to long for this such meeting… God is with us

    • Fezaza on

      Brothers and Sisters, I am sorry I am confused now than ever. I want to be with you guys, you are all smarter than me and you know what you are talking about. But I am confused which one to support, I wish I can support every organization to prove i am smart too, but I don’t have time. But Is there one organization that suits my needs? Please help me.

      I don’t even know why some people have stickers on their cars that say ” baby in car”. Why are they announcing they have babies in their cars? Is it really safe? I think they are telling people not to smoke near their cars.

      Thank you for reading my comment

      • mengesha on

        you fezaza, it is easy to pick the one you like, you are very stupid and dedeb. Shame shame on you. korkoro ras

  2. addis on

    Well done to all Ethiopians in Otttawa. Every thing we do to, however small, contributes to the formation of Ethiopia which is free and democratic where its people live without fear of being perscuted because of their ethnicity/race/tribe.
    we will build a country where people are judged by their merit and not on the basis of their ethnic or clan origin.

  3. TED on

    I live here in ottawa and wanted to boycott products and services exported from ethiopia
    Such as teff injera,e.t.c but the problem is I don’t know the woyane
    affiliated Companies that do the business. I am aware there is a call for this
    companies to disengage themselves
    from doing business with woyane,if that fall on deaf ears
    I need to know these companies.
    Can someone help me? I think this has to be done for every city around the world as well.

    • Responding to Lej TED on

      I am just dumbfounded as to why your thread is out of the topic unlike the others’ who are discussing the ottawa conference. Do you by any chance own a business that caters only to ethiopian consumers? It is amazing how some of you people (Like Lej TED) are so stupid and yet not ashamed about it.

      • TED on

        “In the eyes of stupids
        everybody else is stupid”
        I mean what I want from diaspora EThios is not
        Another party, shengo,libration front ….but people taking action
        b/c we have enough of them and the fact is if we can’t work with the
        many available ones, there doesn’t seem a logical evidence that they
        will work among themselves

  4. mamo on


    The two seats left open are for the non-EPRP organizations and mostly non-Amharas. No one is going to fill them up to be used as a satelite organization for EPRP left overs unless EPRP comes up with another phantom civic organization. I am surprised that after 20 years of TPLF and an additional 17 years of the Derg, rule we still toil with non-consequential names, associations, fronts. Ethiopian prblem cannot be solved by white wash. We may stay in the current condition under the Woyane rule for some time, but sooner the genie is out to consume all of us. It appears that the “wise men” of the past do not have the ear or the guts to face the reality in Ethiopia.

  5. Araya on

    Weather you like it or not, they will be after you now. NOT ONLY BOYCOUT BUT YOU MUST TELL TO ALL YOUR NATIVE ETHIOPIANS TO DO NOT GET ANYTHING FROM ETHIOPIA. Time to take A…………….ction again next to our hero Abebe Gelaw or who is n………….ext.

    • Anonymous on

      “Weather you like it or not, they will be after you now”

      after who??
      If it’s after ppl boycotting obviously they should
      be ready-no gain without pain man

  6. Alula on

    Elias, I want to express my appreciation that you are progressing very much. I do not count on people’s mistake. When I see people learning, I feel joy. I have to day you have become more tolerant and accommodating than Ethiomedia,, Aiga, Tigraionline. These websites cannot afford to accommodate opposing views. I have been observing you and you have made alot of progress. Please keep up.

    I suggest also your improve on the way you attack politicians. Use the truth facts on the ground instead of dwelling on emotions which runs high sometimes.When you attack woyane or eprdf, use the facts everyone knows. Avoid using or adding things that does not exist. One example, I was getting to like ESAT.I was thinking ESAT could be an Ethiopian Al-Jezera, but unfortunately, the Meles Saga at the G8 has done alot of damage to ESAT than to Meles. I am saying this objectively. After watching the competent and unethical behavior of Abebe, and the fabrication of false images of Meles by them and by Ethiomedia. I am running away from ESAT and Ethiomedia after now.

    I do not want you to fall into that trap of lies, fabrications just to foster hatred. It is wrong Elias Hawey. Please stick to the truth and truth win at the end no matter who. But False can only its actors momentalily but disgrace will be the end. I am not liking the forming of parties every week. This weakness very much. Last week you were guys busy establishing transitional council lead by Dr. Fiseha. In Ottawa this week you set up another faction? this is ridiculous honeslty. I do not even know where you get all the money to waste like this. Please have one solid oppos

  7. Tewoflos on

    I guess this is and great start, but why is it the monarchist are always left out. We Ethiopian’s who are monarchist love our country and people too.

  8. Treaty on

    What is this thing that you talk so much about truth, and what is the truth for you anyway? Speaking of the truth why are you attempting to hide your affiliation with weyane? Are you attempting to play a role of refined weyane.There is no such thing as refined weyanes all are sworn enemies of the truth. You guys are in it for financial bonanza on the expense of poor Ethiopians. God willing, though, the time is on the side of the people to unset weyane.You alleged concerning ESAT the following.

    “Meles Saga at the G8 has done a lot of damage to ESAT than to Meles. I am saying this objectively. After watching the competent and unethical behavior of Abebe and the fabrication of false images of Meles by them and by Ethiomedia”.

    What is the false image of melese that is fabricated by ESAT?

    Abebe rightly characterized Melese as Dictator. Do you dispute this characterization? He told him instead of lecturing the G-8 member nations about food security theory he must free Ethiopian political and journalist prisoners. He remids him freedom comes before any discussion of food security .With 40-50 second space he gets that is what he can do. Had he had enough time, I am sure, he could have told him about the where a bouts of $11.7 billion illicit financial out flows, and the tones of coffee lose from ware house which I will present this fact below.

    Indeed melese is a tyrant, looter, liar, killer and pyro-maniac and arsonist etc.

    Apparently, you want us believe you are a man of truth without accepting the fact that Melese Zenawi is a living tyrant with no one equal who is at the center of power leading Ethiopia to destruction, just as he has mislead Tigrians for the least 30 years.

    In fact, since the arrival of TPLF in Addis Condition in Ethiopia in general has been alarming and in particular currently is so unsettling even Tigrians are outraged at Meleses and have called for the tyrant and his inner circles to be placed on silver platter so that Ethiopians can go on with their life. Here are some of the voices of these Tigrians who called for change.

    I am fully aware that TPLFits always argue the TPLF regime has in place impressive economic plan for Ethiopia, without mentioning the fact that this economic plan is intended for the sole benefit of EFORT and its affiliate Medroc. If this be the fact what does it benefit to speak of Ethiopia’s economic plan while the majority of Ethiopians live in destitution, and on food aid from foreign nations?
    Even this so much positively talked issue so called TPLF crafted ‘Ethiopian economic development plan’ is under criticism. For instance, criticism against Weyane Economic plan was raised by Chines (Meles’s mentor) at the World Economic Forum meeting which was held last week in Addis. Here is part of the discourse in the meeting.

    “Is the Meles plan for rapid, state directed capitalism working? At the recent World Economic Forum meeting in the Ethiopian capital Addis Ababa earlier this month, criticism came, not from western NGOs , but from China, Ethiopia’s closest ally. Gao Xiqing of the China Investment Forum, warned Meles: “Do not necessarily do what we did”. Policies of “sheer economic growth” should be avoided, he said. “We now suffer pollution and an unequal distribution of wealth and opportunities… You have a clean sheet of paper here. Try to write something beautiful.”

    What is more even some foreign investors are not happy about the regimes’ credibility problem. You may be interested to read the entire piece about the so called Weyane economy and the staggering problem that it has faced below.

    Finally, don’t try to hide as though you are genuinely interested in open discussion. You have been around I know you just be yourself.

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