Happy New Year from Ardaa jilaa Editors
Dear Ardajila followers,
We hope 2013 has been a productive and enjoyable year for all of you. As a website focused on sharing important information about the Boran society, we have been working hard to bringing up-to-date news and opinions to our audience. Although information has been shared as news or opinions, the objective is to use this forum as a means of exposing the plight of our society. We believe that sharing our plight with each other as well as the world will help to bring forward better solutions. It is not a secret that a society with no voice could be marginalized and suffer silently, particularly, in this fast changing and politicized world. Thus, it is important that each of us stand up and be a voice for our society.
2013 has been a year of blessing for Boran, as the region has seen a relief from a prolonged drought. As we all know this year has been a year of plenty (quufa), and we thank almighty God for this. Furthermore, our hope is elevated by the increasing number of successful Boran boys and girls graduated from universities in varying fields. Above all, the successful implementation of Gumi Gayo resolutions, particularly, the prohibition of alcohol and chat was a significant achievement. This resolution which was promoted by Boran students has significantly minimized the consumption of such addictive substances in the region. However, it is with sadness that we remember those affected by recurring conflicts in Boran regions within Kenya and Ethiopia. While we all had several events to celebrate, those celebrations have been counteracted by the political dilemma facing the Boran society. That being side, it is important not to surrender and halt our struggle for better future. Therefore, we believe this is not a time to be hopeless and withdrawn. Rather it is time to be stronger and engage our problems head-on. While our ancestors have inherited us a strong society that was built with the wisdom and other necessary measures of their time, now it is up to the current generation to carry on the flame and maintain the status.
As it has been documented and confirmed by many, including great scholars, Boran is known as a peace loving and law abiding society. This is not an accident but is a fruit of hard work that is led by Gadaa system. Peace and equality are core values of Gadaa system and this is what migrants and visitors experienced in the Boran region. The Boran society has given a higher status for its gusts; at a time more than its own members. Not only those migrated, but other groups like Gabra, Konso, Garii who inhabit part of the Boran region have coexisted peacefully with Boran for centuries. During these periods, like any coexisting society, there were occasional conflicts exclusively based on issues of resource sharing, and the conflicts are tense and often during drought seasons, when the resources are scarce. Since the cause is obvious, then, these conflicts were resolved easily through traditional negotiation. Even during those times, although the ordinary people were focused on resources, there were hidden agendas promoted by individuals involved in politics. Currently, as several individuals from neighbors and gusts of Boran have started to involve in politics, the scope of the conflicts in the region have been shifted from resource sharing to land grabbing and acquiring political power. Thus, the intensity, routine and magnitude of conflicts are significantly increasing. Interestingly, we are witnessing the emergence of allied groups that fuel conflicts in the region. It is important that the Boran society in conjunction with peace loving groups from societies such as Gabra, Burji, and Garii to counteract such groups and work toward reconciliation. Finally, we hope that all displaced individuals will return to their home peacefully and compensated for their damaged properties accordingly.
As mentioned above Boran society is peace loving and law abiding society governed by the world oldest democracy. Thus, we believe it will be important to embrace the values of our ancestors and should not allow few individuals or groups from outside to change the core of our society. However, we should understand what is at stake and what it takes to be competitive. The answer for our current problem may not be a violence but peaceful competition. The main solution is strengthening our unity, empowering ourselves economically, intellectually and politically within Kenya, Ethiopia and Diaspora. Therefore let 2014 be a year we start working toward these goals. Reaching these goals is possible by first sharing information and knowledge. Therefore, we invite all our followers to start participating in this process by contributing their part.
Happy New Year and we hope 2014 will be a year of peace, unity and productivity for all.
Gadaani ta nagaa, ta qufaa, ta gabinnaa, fi ta gudinaa.
Kayoo qabana!! Kayomisi waaqa!!!!!!!!!!