Fana: At a Speed of Life!

Peace for Oromo Villages!

We wholeheartedly advocate for peace, without any pretense. Despite having a strong traditional system like Gada, which is respected by other communities for its ability to address political issues, we have not utilized it for our own benefit. Likewise, while the law guarantees our right to live and work in a secure and stable region, we are currently grappling with challenges caused by widespread lawlessness. Today is different from yesterday. The Oromo people have secured their destiny at great cost. No longer are they forced to seek their future through the barrel of a gun nor through conflict in the jungles. The political landscape has evolved towards peaceful means of struggle. The people have exercised their constitutional rights by choosing leaders based on presented political ideas and programs, backed by crucial legal guarantees.

However, the hard-won destiny of our people is now under siege by armed groups in the jungles. It is deeply shameful and disgraceful, both in human eyes and before our Creator, to face terror from those born among us. The brutal killings and abuse of our elders, men, women, and children mark a tragic chapter. The looting and destruction of Oromo villages over the past four years alone have erased much of our past achievements and current progress.

As a united and responsible people, we assert: “The issue must be resolved peacefully; peace and stability must prevail.” Our demand is not without reason. We seek an end to the horrendous suffering inflicted upon our people and the opportunity to live, work, and thrive peacefully. We are committed to this struggle.

The sacrifices made by the Oromo in the past have paved the way for modern political choices today. With the opening of the political arena, repression of ideas, suppression of rights, and inhuman treatment due to differing political views are becoming history. The opportunity for free exchange of ideas, competing through political programs, governing responsibly, and serving the people has emerged. Laws and systems are being established to support this, alongside efforts to strengthen our institutions.

Therefore, there is no justification for the Oromo struggle to resort to arms or sacrifice more lives. It’s contradictory to witness the Shane rebels condemning the past wrongdoings of previous regimes against our people, while at the same time using violence and firearms to challenge and dismantle the hard-earned freedom that our people achieved through significant sacrifices. Why subject our villages, where we were born and raised with dignity, to prolonged sieges, anguish, and humiliations?

The Oromia Regional State Government has consistently called for peaceful conflict resolution, respecting our traditions. Responding to this call, thousands of ABO Shane fighters have embraced peace, undergoing rehabilitation and reintegration into society. Many more are in the process.

The government has shown respect for human dignity and traditional values by welcoming former fighters back peacefully, rehabilitating and reintegrating them into society. Post-reform, this effort continues, ensuring their full participation and restoration.

An inclusive national dialogue forum has been proposed to close the chapter of grief, frustration, and conflict, forging a path of consensus. The government and people are committed to dialogue and negotiation as solutions, moving away from political stagnation towards conflict resolution.

Therefore, I reaffirm my call for peaceful conflict resolution, urging an end to torture, killing, and looting by armed forces. Let us stabilize the Oromo villages. To those who have chosen peace and seek to return to their family, I say without hesitation: come back! We are ready to welcome you with the dignity and respect befitting human beings and our traditions.

Peace belongs in the Oromo Villages!

The government extends its hand for peace, unwavering and open!

Shimelis Abdisa, President of the Oromia Regional State

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