October 12, 2009

Millions Celebrated Irreechaa (Oromo Thanksgiving) At Arsadii Lake, Bushooftuu, Oromia: Religious Leaders Denied Stage by The TPLF Regime

(OLF News, October 11, 2009)

This year’s irreechaa (Oromo thanksgiving) celebration at Lake Arsadii, located near Bushooftuu town of the Eastern Shoa zone of Oromia, have attracted close to three million people, OLF News correspondents who participated in the celebration reported from Finfinnee (Addis Ababa). The report added that the TPLF regime, which always fears any form of gathering of the Oromo people, tried to put obstacles on this national celebration by putting a lot of so called “security check points” terrorizing and returning people on the check points by creating all sorts of reasons. After the celebration has started, while those who went for celebration wanted to get lessons and speeches about the holiday from community leaders and scholars, the Wayyaanee cadres brought officials of the regime and were making an unrelated speech about their government and what they call “misoomaa” meaning “development activities” of the regime.

Over the past several years of the current administration, speeches were made on this celebration by renowned individuals, such as religious leaders, community leaders, and scholars. At this year however, after labeling all renowned individuals and knowledgeable community leaders as “anti-people” and sympathizers of OLF, the TPLF-led puppets of the so called OPDO cadres have forcefully controlled the Irrechaa stage, in an attempt to make their propaganda for the regime. Several Oromo nationalists who have been angry by this arrogant behavior of the regime’s cadres were forced to celebrate the occasion separately by organizing themselves in groups. Some others have organized a small gathering inside Arsadii Lake itself, and tried to pass out their messages as everybody, except Wayyaanee authorities, was denied the stage.

It is to be recalled that in the year 2008, OLF News had reported that those Oromos who were very excited and have been dancing and singing traditional songs at the Arsadii Lake have been harassed and beaten by the TPLF so called “police forces” and many others were thrown into jail for no apparent reason. Traditional songs have been prohibited and stopped by the allegation that they have been expressions of longing for liberation and hatred the Oromo people have for the regime. This year, to prevent such traditional dances and emotional expressions of brutality of the regime through singing and dancing, the regime has dispatched a large number of police forces and controlled all of the stage by force.

Although the Irrecha celebration committee known as “Historical and Cultural Committee” has been organized under the Macca and Tulama Association, they were denied the stage by the Wayyaanee authorities and were forced to pass their message in a small gathering inside Arsadii Lake. Even under such difficult circumstances the Oromo people have reportedly been expressing their views and hard feelings for the regime through songs.

Our reporter added that this year’s Irreecha celebration didn’t get any media coverage by the mass media controlled by the TPLF regime.
OLF News

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