ODP Blames OLF for Failing to Implement Peace Plan

ODP-OLF-disputeDecember 26, 2018 - The Oromo Democratic Party (ODP) blamed the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) for failing to implement the peace plan both parties agreed upon, including the disarmament of the OLF.

Speaking to the press, ODP representative Mogos Edeo said "the peace agreement reached between the Oromo Democratic Party (ODP) and the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) to pacify Oromia a month ago has expired without bearing fruit due to the unwillingness of OLF."

According to him, on 26 November 2018, a committee was formed to prepare a joint plan to maintain peace, disarm OLF fighters, and sustain the peaceful struggle among the parties.

The two parties had established a committee comprising of six members drawn from both parties to monitor the implementation of the agreement.

Moges said the committee was established based on the suggestion from religious fathers and elders to facilitate a dialogue for constructive engagement by both parties.

However, in a press conference on December 22, the leader of the Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), Dawud Ibsa said there was fighting going on between his rebel forces and government forces in parts of Oromia, but particularly in western Wellega, where he said heavy fighting was going on.

This was the result of premature steps taken by the national defense forces, the OLF leader said, adding that this had caused fear and distress among the local public.

Mr. Dawud Ibsa added that there were many agreements reached between OLF and the Ethiopian government. To maintain peace, he said, the current central government as well as his party should hold serious talks and arrive at mutually agreed upon decisions. The Ethiopian government also should do its part to honor the agreements, he said.

The OLF Chairman, Dawud Ibsa said his organization was ready for talks with the government to resolve the conflict if the Ethiopian government is ready to settle the disagreement peacefully.  

You can watch the statement given by Dawud Ibsa, the OLF Chairman, in a press conference held yesterday here at Ezega Videos.

It is unknown why, after coming to Ethiopia to pursue a peaceful political discourse, the OLF is still allowed to maintain arms, much less challenge the authority of the national defense forces over any region in the country. It is also unknown, why the ODP is the primary negotiator here, rather than the central government, for any armed activity of this sort is the domain of the federal government, making the central government look like a mere extension of the ODP.

Further, these latest developments also do not bode well for a peaceful coexistence between the ODP and the OLF in Oromia and Ethiopian politics. As we move forward into the planned elections in 2020, the friction and mistrust between the two can grow, making today's slogan of 'medemer' a child's play.



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