Sidama Liberation Front

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We Send Our Deepest and Heart-Felt Condolences to the Families of the Sidama Mudslide Victims!

Press Release by the Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF), May 29, 2018

It came to our attention that since May 26, 2018, a heavy rain created mudslide caused the unsettling death of over 25 people and the destruction of unknown numbers of domestic and wild animals in Sidama Zone of Cirre district adjacent to the Oromia. In the Oromia Arsi’s western part the unknown numbers of lives have been also reportedly lost. About 17 people and unknown numbers of animals become the subject of death resulted from the mudslide in Arbaminch of the southern regional state since Saturday.  The Oromia regional state and most of the South’s several Zones have got one thing in common; deliberate marginalisation by the EPRDF/TPLF’s Federal government as their resources are exploited for the last 27 years. Further reports also indicate that the Sidama region has been hit the hardest as it is the area that was neglected by the TPLF’s government for over 2 and a half decades albeit the regime’s continual milking of its wealth and rich resources.

Sadly, the untimely torrential rain is responsible for the indicated deaths of civilians in Sidama, Oromia and Arbaminch; all region and Zone states the regime considers their being periphery in the aspects of development and pre-preparation to avoid such natural and man-made disasters from causing major harms. To date we know that, the Oromo people who were displaced from their properties in Ogaden Somali region a year ago are left destitute without hope whilst the TPLF/EPRDF’s government works to keep its politico-economic interest alive. To make the pain of the Sidama nation worst, until we issued this statement, the southern regional state puppet leader ‘Dese Dalke’ who claims to be the Sidama hasn’t visited the indicated Sidama victims in spite of the Sidama Ejjeetto’s yearnings for his and the involvement of the international community to address the needs of hundreds of Sidama people who have been shocked with the incident and the loss of all they possess including their family members, animals and subsistent farms with its crops.      

Extremely shocked, the Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF) sends its deepest and heart-felt condolences to the families of Sidama, Oromo and Arbaminch victims. We are revolted to learn that the southern regional puppet president and the TPLF’s Sidama’s criminal cadre the infamous Shiferaw Shigute, both of whom trade by the name of the Sidama nation remained silent at this needy time for the Sidama nation. Therefore, we urge the Sidama nation to work in unison to support the victims of mudslide and candidly work to understand the inhumane nature and anti-Sidama policy of the regime in power. This further shows the need to fight for own rights and to dismantle the amorphous prison, the SNNPR as there is no one on planet who can wilfully allow you to become free and self-sufficient unless you fight for your rights.

Finally, we would like to let our people and those of our Oromo brothers and sisters and the Arbaminch victims know that we stand by them at this critical time with all possible means. We also urge our people to work together to mobilise urgent fund for the victims until they are resettled in the area where professionally designated to be safe.  We urge the regime in power, its regional and Sidama Zone cadres who are all urgent to stifle freedom of movement but silent or sluggish in addressing the need of victims during such harrowing time to allow the international relief organisations to help the Sidama victims as urgently as possible. We also urge the international aid organisations such as Red Cross to urgently intervene to assist the Sidama and the other victims of natural disaster. We assure the Sidama victims that we do all possible support until they are relocated and settled in an appropriate location to do so.

Freedom for the Sidama and the rest subjugated nations and peoples; and May justice be for the victims!

The Sidama National Liberation Front (SNLF) May 29, 2018