Ethiopia: Murder convicted criminals got pardoned, political prisoners transferred to a notorious prison
March 27, 2020
Ethiopian government has released a statement about pardoning prisoners because of Coronavirus. What might seem commendable is actually concerning. While processing paperwork, prison officials raised concerns about the future safety of our society because the list contains hundreds of dangerous criminals convicted of theft, robbery, assault and attempted murder. Ex-government officials charged with corruption and extortion are also on the list to be released. They are a total of 4089 criminals, mainly from Qilinxo, Qaliti, Dire Dhawa, Zuwaye and Shoa Robit. 200 have been released out of Qilinxo today.
On the other hand, Oromo prisoners of consciousness and members of opposition political parties have been transferred to a prison named Abba Samuel as of yesterday. Abba Samuel prison was built by TPLF to replace Maekelawi. TPLF was forced to shut it down after a heavy campaign against the inhumane living condition it creates for human beings. Abba Samuel Prison either needs to be demolished completely or it may be utilized for material storage purposes. The building does not have any running water and it is extremely cold at night because of the many gaps within the structure of the building. What is more concerning is the various soundproof torture chambers and isolated dark rooms built in it. The only prisoners currently transferred there that I know of are Yaazoo Kabbabaa, Ashabbir Barii, Aanaa Baayisaa, Callaa along with 10 othes from Qilinxo as well as 67 from undisclosed locations. All of whom are exclusively Oromo Political Prisoners.
I would like to get more information about this facility for advocacy purposes. Perhaps ex-prisoners and prison employees can assist me by sharing more about the condition of this facility. I would also appreciate it if anyone can provide me contact information of individuals and Organizations who were involved in the campaign to successfully get Abba Samuel Prison shutdown few years ago.
I encourage my Oromo brothers and sisters to join the struggle and focus on getting rid of Abiy Ahmed’s government out of Oromia along with the so-called team Lema and everyone else assisting them to subjugate the Oromo society. No more second chances for these people.
The main question of Oromo is not about a prison condition, or the unjust State of Emergency, or whether Finfine, Dire Dhawa, Wallo or Raya belongs to Oromo and even about the master plan. All of our questions can only be answered completely when Oromia is liberated. Only then, a true Oromo will govern Oromia. That can only be achieved if we all do our share of contributions.