On the wake of the independence African countries realized and the restoration of their dignity after waging bitter struggle against colonization the much sought for new breath of fresh air could hardly precipitate as most African leaders couldn’t rise up above their petty feelings of personal gains.
Inured to the plight of the majority, in whose name they raised the baton of independence and got support, the so called freedom icons had made a point amassing as much fortune leeching on national wealth. What a mockery of independence!
Creaming off the national cake they were unwilling to let go the rein of power. A good number of African leaders were also promoting parochialism and sowing a seed of discord. Instead of designing policies and strategies that pull their people out of the quagmire of poverty as well as ensure accountability and democracy they were busy muffling the voices of the majority. Hence genuine freedom icons or the true sons of Africa were removed from power by those blinded by the lust of power.
Stripped of their human and democratic rights Africans were prompted to mount a guerrilla fighting against despotic leaders. Owing to this tragedy, Africa, for ages, had remained a war-torn and strife-ridden continent that ironically vested its hope on the food aid of its former colonizers.
That is why some described the tragic phenomena that unfolded in the following vein: “Riding itself from white colonizers Africa has become subject to black colonizers!”
Some African leaders were also serving a Trojan-horse to neo-colonizers that bless despots’ grip of power. As the saying goes “Out-Heroding Herod” outsmarting their corrupt leaders civil servants were not giving service without the greasing of their palms with oil.
It is using the aforementioned backdrop as a prism one could decipher the lack of good governance and human right protection prevalent in most African countries until recent times. It is cognizant of the significance of these decisive ingredients—good governance and human rights protection— the role of Ombudsman institutions and other horizontal democratic institutions in promoting good governance and human rights protection is gaining currency here in Africa. Also the institutions role in public service performance and socio-political stability is quite decisive.
Regarding human rights protection and good governance, Ethiopia today is engaged in a task that lays the groundwork for the coming generation. The country is engaged in a broad array of activities for the advent of tranquility and calm in Africa. President of the Federal Democratic of Ethiopia Dr. Mulatu Teshome so pointed out while delivering a keynote speech on the first ever African Ombudsman and Mediators Association (AOMA)- African Union(AU) bilateral conference and AOMA’s 4th general assembly that was held in Union’s Addis Ababa Complex .
In discharging its responsibility Ethiopia is doing everything it can to create a continent that showcases good governance. Specially in areas of good governance it is meticulously studying root causes of hurdles so as to extirpate them.
Ethiopia is a country that proved forthcoming and exemplary in signing conventions and implementing it.
The president noted
“ External and internal problems ,social crisis and corruption are among the strangleholds for the development of Africa. To nip corruption in the bud, before it turns out a social malice, Ethiopia is fighting it out putting in place anti-corruption and ethics commission. The Ombudsman and the human rights commission introduced in Ethiopia are also playing their due role in ensuring the observance of human rights and the promotion of good governance.
Ethiopia is also actively working represented in the AOMA-AU for the advent of good governance and the coming into being of peace and democracy in the continent. It has also a plan to further forge its ties with AU.
The fact that the conference is held at this juncture, Ethiopia is bracing up to conduct a national election, avails an opportune occasion to the institutes to closely follow developments and get inputs.
According to W/ro Fozia Amin,chief Ombudsman of Ethiopian Institution of Ombudsman and AOMA permanent Envoy of the AU, pertaining to the observance of human rights and the promotion of good governance, in line with the objective reality on the ground,countries have been been undertaking various activities and responding to questions. Those established at the continental level, creating a common front, have been engaging in various activities. When they gather under the umbrella of AU they could easily effect the motive reason of their birth. The confluence of the institutions to share experience and cross-pollinate ideas could lend power to their activities.
Health and education coverage as well as external and internal conflicts are issues that cry out in Africa for a joint fight.
The AoMA-AU bilateral conference plays quite a role in coming up with indigenous institutional capacity to address the continent’s good governance and human right issues.
AOMA and its member institution are in a better position to paint a more comprehensive and analytic picture on the continent’s good governance and human rights issue.//
“As AOMA frequently deliberates over each and every country’s good governance and human rights issues,it can have a comprehensive and a greater picture than any other regional or international entity”
President of the Federal Democratic of Ethiopia Dr. Mulatu Teshome