Demand for Statehood Suppressed by SEPDM: Ethnic Kaffa People

By Staff Reporter  

Kafa-zone-statehood-demandDecember 8, 2019 ( -- Ethnic Kaffa people in the Southern Nations Nationalities and Peoples Region (SNNPR) of Ethiopia have voiced complaints about the “suppression” by the regional government to relinquish their demand to elevate Kaffa zone into statehood.

The complaints were made over the weekend during public meetings wherein ethnic Kaffa people have once again called on the regional government to begin the process the demand for upgrading of the Kaffa zone into regional status, administrator of the Kaffa zone Belay Tesema told news media.

“The people of Kaffa also called on the government to abandon the ruling of the zone by a command post,” he said.

A year has gone since ethnic Kaffa people submitted their request of acquiring statehood status to the council of the regional governing body- Southern Ethiopia People's Democratic Movement (SEPDM).

The people of Kaffa celebrated the first anniversary of request submission in 12 districts and Bonga town, seat of the zonal administration.

Ethiopia’s Southern Regional State, the third most populous in the Federal Republic, has been rocked by rising demands from zones for a regional status.

The request for regional status has flared up in the wake of the recent referendum in which the people in Sidama zone gained a landslide victory to assume a statehood status.

Requests have multiplied, with the Wolayta, Kaffa, Gurage, Hadiya and Kembata Zones already demanding statehood.

“The people of Kaffa zone are obliged to submit their demand for statehood again as the council of the regional administration remains indifferent to the previous request,” Berhanu Haile. chairman of the Kaffa zone’s demand for statehood organizing committee has said.

In a recent visit to the zone, the Chairman of the SPDM Muferiat Kemil and deputy president of the SNNPR Restu Yirdaw said the demand for statehood by the people of zone will be addressed based on a study to be conducted in the near future.

The officials were blamed to have put pressure on the people not to stage any demonstration or engage other activities ahead of the study and response from both the regional government.

The public meeting which was held under the theme “Let Our Demand for Statehood Be Heard.” the participants accused the regional government of suppressing the demand for statehood, Asaye Alemayehu representative of the youth in Kaffa zone has said.

“The regional government has been repressing the people’s demand for statehood under the pretext that absence of good governance was a problem rather in the zone demand,” Asaye added

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