More recently Ethiopian Somali State was in chaos and civilian causalities as well as property damages were widely reported on various media outlets. But, experts have their say on the legal grounds for the measures taken to restore peace and order apart from upholding human rights in this State.
Now, there is comparable stability in the State and the residents are getting back to their normal lives. Many believed that the major reason behind the instability was the fabrication news by some of the state authorities on the federal government claiming on disposition and arousing the youth to practice article 39 of the constitution, which states the right to self determination up to secession.
It was on Monday August 6, 2018 that the Federal Government through the Communication Affairs Minister Ahmed Shide announced as per the request of the Somali State Government, the federal security force was ordered to intervene in a bid to pacify the state.
However, Temesgen Tessema, a Law Lecturer at Wollo University, is doubtful of Ahmed’s statement. He says although it was necessary to intervene to save basic human rights from violation, the federal government should have been strategic in dealing with such incident. “According to the constitution and other laws of the nation, the Prime Minister could pass state of emergency to pacify the state, but he did not do so.”
Even the current instability is emanated from the request to apply the Constitution. “The state leader was asked to apply article 39 of the constitution while we do not have any idea why he decided that. However the federal government intervened without the request of the state. And this is also breaking the law.
The federal government might need to practice its responsibility but the way it has engaged was legally wrong.”
Ethnic based federalism mainly hinders the respect of human and democratic right. And it is hard to interfere in states’ affairs as the system is very sensitive by its nature. Due to this, various human and democratic violations happen but do not get the needed nee-jerk reaction. Biniyam Abate Acting Director of the Ethiopian Human Rights Council is second to Temesgen.
The human right violation is not new to the country; it has been clearly seen month ago when the Somali and Oromia States got into conflict. However the government is hesitant to take instant measure. It has to play its responsibility of protecting human right of the people, he says.
The federal government reaction to pacify the Somali State human right violation was too late. The government shall give emphasis on human right violations beyond the intervention mechanisms. Biniyam also calls on the government to bring those perpetrators who took part recently in human right violation before law.
Blue Party Chairperson Yeshiwas Assefa indicates that the instability of the country as a general reflection of the sabotage made by corrupted officials to disrupt the national reform agenda in a bid to cover their misdeed.
The state administer is also part of the instability. Therefore the government needs to take strict measures on the officials and their connivances, he notes.
As to Yeshiwas, the federal government must take strong measures on those engaged in human right violation unless otherwise, it should be asked by the local and international organizations working on human and democratic rights. It has been hesitant for a long time when human right violated and institutions were destroyed. From now and on, the government must take immediate measure against the criminals, Yeshiwas underlines.
Various human and democratic right violations and ethnic based conflicts are once relating to the ratification process of the Constitution in one or another ways, according to Temesgen.
At that time, the people were not properly represented, during the ratification process there were confusion and the nationalities had not have clear position on it.
The constitution was just the product of a winning party. And the inclusion of the articles that stated about various contradictory issues including the secession clearly shows the flaw.
Therefore to serve human and democratic rights and to ensure lasting peace, the government might examine its ethnic based federalism, the professionals suggest.
BY YOHANES JEMANEH