By Staff Reporter
September 14, 2020 (Ezega.com) -- The Oromo Liberation Front (OLF) has dismissed Dawud Ibsa as chairperson of the front for alleged involvement in armed struggle and for making repeated attempts to split up the front’s unity.
The chairperson’s dismissal aims to rescue the party from a breakup, Public Relations Head of the front Kejela Merdassa told local media.
The front’s executive committee in a statement issued on Sunday stated several disciplinary offenses that Dawud Ibsa has committed while serving as chairperson of the front.
The executive committee accused the chairperson of forming opposing forces within the front and threatening the unity of the party for the fourth time and that has dragged the party's move towards peaceful political struggle.
“The front’s executive committee had found out that the chairperson has had links with the OLF rebel group which has been fighting the government in western and southern Ethiopia,” Kejela said.
The executive committee of the front also accused the chairperson of neglecting agreements reached between the government and OLF to merge the OLF troops with members of the national defense forces.
“He rather opted to pursue both peaceful and armed struggle together as opposed to the decisions reached by the front,” Kejela said.
According to the head, the party has already submitted all the necessary documents and processes to the National Electoral Board of Ethiopia (NEBE).
Deputy Chairperson of the party Ararso Bikila will lead the front as chairperson until a general assembly elects a new chairperson.
“The chairperson has posed several threats over the existence of the front for 20 years now but the problem has become more serious since last July, Kejela noted.
It is recalled that Dawud Ibsa was put under house arrest last July for undisclosed reasons but released after two days and later the government said the arrest was done for his safety amid escalating disagreements between the chairperson and executive committee of the front.
Information about division within OLF recently became a point of discussion and government officials have been accusing the OLF of using a combination of armed and peaceful struggle. Dawud Ibssa’s faction is said to use both approaches in the race for power.
The struggle for power between ethnic Oromo political parties frequently claims innocent lives of non-Oromos as manifested in the recent massacre in the Oromo region of Ethiopia.
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