Is the direction of PM Abiy Ahmed, chairman,
Is the direction of PM Abiy Ahmed, chairman, EPRDF to merge Ethiopia’s ruling coalition and form one national party or to play politics by disrupting the existing structure?
1. There is a rumor that the #coalition of Ethiopian People’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (#EPRDF) is going to be merged to form one national party with the initiative of PM #Abiy Ahmed, the chairperson of the party. This week, he is working to create a party called prosperous party by merging the constituent parts. By the way, is the PM’s move to form one national party or to disrupt the existing system?
First and foremost, who is the chairperson of EPRDF? In this regard, recalling those destructive opinions he has been giving against the coalition is of much significance to easily identify who the chairperson really is. Doctor Abiy is the chairperson, however, when he reflects his outlooks towards EPRDF, he doesn’t practically appear to be the chairperson of the front. Since he came to office, Abiy has been generalizing all that EPRDF has done so far, during the last 27 years by repeatedly mentioning as the journey of darkness. Moreover, it was an open secret that he has also been frequently heard mentioning EPRDF as a terrorist. During his one-year period as a PM, the occasions during which Abiy did not mention the bad image of EPRDF were hand-count. He has preached the badness of the front at almost all stages. As a result, the structural image of the party is negatively changed among society. The comments the chairperson has been giving, of course, seem to have been deliberately libeling EPRDF. By the way, why did the PM want to repeatedly disparage EPRDF? This indicates the chairperson has been clearly explaining that he did not want EPRDF from the very beginning.
The issue of establishing one national party has to start from this background of the chairperson. One can simply understand the extent of hatred the chairperson has towards EPRDF, referring to his previous speeches. How anyone with rational thinking could, therefore, expect this chairperson to have the interest to see EPRDF continue existing? This can be nothing beyond fooling him/herself. Thus, it is simple to understand that the action of the #chairperson is not to create one national party by merging the coalition but to disrupt the existing structure.
2. It is EPRDF which should, of course, clarify whether the action of the chairperson is to create a national party or to disrupt the existing structure. However, being able to know who the chairperson has really helped us to see his actions with suspicious eyes. On the contrary, knowing who EPRDF really is can clearly show us the direction the chairperson is going through. So who is EPRDF? EPRDF is an organization which does not allow individuals who want to be beyond the structure to satisfy their mad rush to gain power. And this structural behavior emanates from the practices of the organization’s formation. EPRDF is a unique organization in its practice and formation. In its formation, EPRDF does not have a member of an individual. Its practice follows a division of power. It consists of multinational parties, namely TPLF,#ADP, #ODP, and #SEPDM. As a result, individuals can not directly be a member of the front. They can only be members via these four constituent parties. This practice has prevented individuals from becoming beyond the structure to hold complete power thereby become absolutists. Consequently, power is given, to the four main parties, not to individuals according to the party’s practice. This formation and practice do not allow the chairperson to act beyond the red line. He cannot execute things as he wishes in the name of what he calls political change. Because his principle of synergy is against EPRDF’s former political culture and practice. So, disrupting the structural formation and practice in the name of creating one national political party is necessary. This enables the chairperson to remove the coalition which constitutes EPRDF thereby make everything under his control. In such a case, there would not be sovereign power of regional states. The chairperson is to be granted an absolute power not only on EPRDF but also on the nation. The parties away from the main four constituent parties of EPRDF are allied parties. Allied parties are not a member of EPRDF. Hence, they do not have a vote. What connects them to EPRDF is that they share its ideology. Merging these allied parties into one party is adding another element of power to the chairperson. This could, however, be realized by disrupting the existing EPRDF’s structure and procedure during the merging process. So what the chairman's approach is, now becoming clear.
3. In the merging process, the chairperson would follow two types of approaches against TPLF. If possible, he would try to make it part of the new party. And this cannot be as easy as one may think to implement. So the second option is to isolate TPLF. Nonetheless, this would also result in another problem.
Many people associate the existence of TPLF with EPRDF and raise questions with regard to its survival in case the other constituent parties of EPRDF are merged. The question is important. Nevertheless, understanding that there is a critical question behind that is of much importance. As to my point of view, the question is, what will happen to EPRDF itself if the more important TPLF become independent? So it is better to discuss the issue of EPRDF by leaving the issue of TPLF to TPLF itself. It is unthinkable to imagine the existence of EPRDF that marginalized TPLF. I have my own reasons for this. It is TPLF that created EPRDF. Because it is the owner of all the basic economic and political theories and policies of the front. It is the author of the developmental government called revolutionary democracy. And this is built on the political objectives of development, peace, and democracy.
Excluding TPLF during the merging processes would not be easily considered as expelling individuals from EPRDF. The exclusion of TPLF shows that EPRDF is disgruntled, not merged. The exclusion of TPLF could only indicate the formation of a new party, not a new platform of its own. In the process, the existing formation and procedures would only be replaced by another. Not only that, it will not break the EPRDF's basic political ideology.
EPRDF cannot maintain the existing revolutionary democracy when merged. Because the political change it has begun does not allow it to do so. Revolutionary democracy which is the ideology of a developmental state has been tumbled down like a piece of raw meat by the new leadership of the chairperson. It is trying to think that the new leadership which propagates hatred will maintain the path of EPRDF. Therefore, the word EPRDF will be replaced by "prosperity party." The philosophy of synergy would replace the philosophy of inclusion of revolutionary democracy. The objectives of EPRDF, development, democracy, and peace would be replaced by such tempting words such as freedom, unity, forgiveness, and synergy. Thus, it is becoming clear that the existing philosophy of revolutionary democracy will not, from now on continue. It is inevitable that all the core values that EPRDF has been identified by would completely be changed when it is merged. In this case, EPRDF is not merging, but the structure would be removed for play politics that is for the survival of a new party. Therefore, the intention of merging EPRDF is not to bring about a structural change but to create a new party that paves a way for individuals to seize absolute power.
4. In conclusion, the secrete behind the interest to merge EPRDF can be seen in terms of Dr. Abiy’s philosophy called synergy. The political game would only include those who are synergized. So, there would be two categories labeled as synergized and not synergized as basic requirements Whether to be or not to be included in all aspects of socio, political and economic activities. As a result, the end target of merging is not to bring about a structural change, but to create an accumulated power of synergized groups which reached a consensus in a smoke-filled room. The powers that have been, previously dispersed at all levels of government for the sake of democratic practices would be accumulated in one place and/individual.
This way, the chairperson is striving to away with the key pillars of EPRDF i.e. structural competency which the front was identified by. And this is eventually to establish a command-post that paves the way to play politics to realize his dream to be a totalitarian government. If it is so, the chairperson has already started his journey to becoming a dictator.
Anyways, it is time that tells everything,
WRITTEN BY ZEMENFES AXUMAWI@DIMTSI WOYANE
TRANSLATED BY SHUSHAY ADANE #DimtsiWoyane