If the Sufferings of the Eritrean Prisoners are linked to Tyrant’s Diction of “No Contract,” Who to Hold Accountable?
The tyrant by claiming “no contract” seeks to free himself from being held accountable, answerable, and punishable for all crimes perpetrated against innocent Eritreans. Indeed, it should be the other way around in that his
The tyrant by claiming “no contract” seeks to free himself from being held accountable, answerable, and punishable for all crimes perpetrated against innocent Eritreans. Indeed, it should be the other way around in that his not being elected is sufficient evidence that he has no power to rule and no power to put people in jail.
As self-appointed, the tyrant manifests a sense of being foreign to all binding rules with the people whenever he is asked about the time to step down. He believes his non-adherence to any contract with the people demonstrates denial of any rules that can bring him down using the same rungs of the ladder he used to get on top. Unless the tyrant is pushed to fall down to the ground from the top of the ladder, his perception of “no contract” is for for-life on top of the ladder. He hates to confront the truth head-on by running away to his hiding places, like Adi Hallo, from those who challenge his crown & throne by virtue of his claim of “no contract.”
The “no contract” with the people has given the tyrant unconditional rights to abuse power and manipulate the issuance of decrees and executive orders as instruments of controlling the people. To declare his diction of “no contract,” he had to throw his equals in power or the G-15 deep into pits from where climbing up is impossible unless the ladder is snatched from the tyrant and given to the dungeoned G-15 so as to climb out [to freedom].
In the absence of legal institution, many Eritreans are being pushed to prayers institution for safe transition of power. However, the fatigue by length of his reign let the Eritrean people to believe that even God is on the side of the tyrant because God is not answering their prayers for the tyrant to miss his steps on the ladder and fall down. To those who can read the signs of the answered prayers, God has already removed the steps on the tyrant’s ladder and that is the reason for his not stepping down. He got to be pushed down from top of the ladder. If it is hard for the tyrant to jump down to the ground, it should not be hard for the people to take chances to push the tyrant down to the ground by taking the ladder down.
Some courageous Eritreans who tried to remove the holding nails of the ladder were instantly killed or had to commit suicide because the “no rule” cannot assure a fair trial. Indeed, in a land of no rule of law, one who is considered a threat to the power of the tyrant is presumed to be guilty by being a challenger or accused of staging a rebellion. The total absence of justice, here, also denies the presumed guilty person his/her rights of presentment before justices. Since the tyrant empowered himself by declaring “no contract,” he can condemn any to hardship and prison or internment camps denying normal life or depriving life and property without due process of the tyrant’s care in lieu of law. After all, if the “no contract” amounts to absolute power in the hands of the tyrant; then, it means the tyrant has acquired all the powers to become an autocrat by forcing all those who trusted him to surrender all their powers to him thereby turning the Eritrean people, after their 30 years of struggle for freedom, into his subjects.
The Source of the Tyrant’s Diction of “No Contract”
When the tyrant joined the armed struggle of the Great Eritrean Revolution, no one had to sign a contract with him because he joined the struggle out of his free will. As a volunteer, the tyrant like the other fighters should have perceived all the meaningful choices of all those who were joining to fight the foreign army occupation and the horrors they caused. The volunteers offered their life and time or knowledge and money, in both cases of which no one expected future compensation of any kind other than quenching or satisfying his/her principle or burning desire to liberate the Eritrean land and the Eritrean people.
The Eritrean armed struggle was driven by the maxim of “what is taken by force must be taken back by force,” after exhausting all peaceful means. Once the Eritrean land and people were liberated from the Ethiopian occupation forces, the question of the Eritrean independence was put to the Eritrean people’s vote, for the first time ever vide referendum as a peaceful solution to the illegal occupation of Eritrea by the previous Ethiopian authorities. The referendum resulted in a 99.83% “Yes” vote for independence. The decisive 99.83% “Yes” vote for independence in a very high turnout of voters endorsed the outcome of the armed struggle. However, the new Ethiopian government, as promised, had to surrender only to the outcome of the referendum. In accordance with the decisive referendum outcome, the Ethiopian government declared on Wednesday, April 28, 1993 that Eritrea was an independent State. Thus, the Ethiopian government handed over the authority and powers to the Transitional or Provisional of Eritrea on the condition the Eritrean constitution to be drafted and implemented as well as elections of the governing bodies to be held within four years.
As and upon the election, the army was expected to go back to its barracks/camps leaving the State’s governance to the elected people. This was the contract the tyrant had with the people, which he failed to honor. As per the terms of the transitional government’s contract, the valid contract between the transitional government and the Eritrean people ended in 1997, i.e. the fourth year from 1993. Next, through election, if occurred, the tyrant could have sought and won a new contract with the people that might have lasted another four years to end in 2001. However, due to no election, the tyrant does not have a valid contract with the people ever since 1997 and, as such he has nothing to fulfill legally except for standing a trial of betrayal of trust and defiance from the beginning. However, the people cannot speak of a broken contract because there was no contract, to begin with, between them and the tyrant, nor can the people under the tyrant’s diction of “no contract” expect to be treated with respect and dignity.
Linking the Multiplication of Prisons to the Messes of the Tyrant
When there are no rules to abide by, the people plunge into troubles easily and cease to be a functioning society. In the eyes of the tyrannical system, everyone is a criminal. To avoid being put on the screen of the regime, many voluntarily have had to put their family members on constant surveillance self-updating the security about the whereabouts of each family member every day in order for their business licenses not to be cancelled. This shows that indeed there is no contract in Eritrea, as asserted by the tyrant, and in line with the tyrant’s diction of “no contract” the whole nation is under observation every minute and every second. It makes no difference whether one is in prison or not because there is no difference between a closed prison and an open-air prison. For example, in an open-air prison, those who are strong-willed tend to confront the injustice of the regime in order to satisfy their desire of free expression but they end in closed prisons simply for enjoying the crimes of free speech. And, those who are determined to enjoy freedom of movement try to move from place to place without permits exposing themselves to bullets and imprisonments. In both cases, it is evident that the tyrant has achieved domination of the people and yet he is cruel and merciless in that he uses brutal means to punish the violators, committing the worst and gravest violations of human rights.
To Eritrean vacationers, everywhere they go the regime’s exploitations and oppressions are loud and clear. It is evident; the tyrant has turned the once progressive EPLF into heinous Higdef (PFDJ), the human eater. The EPLF’s cultural treasures of respect and dignity are being converted to sources of horrors and atrocities generating only fear, hardship, threats of imprisonment and disappearance in order to impose a one man rule. As one vacationer from the USA who happened to visit a relative prisoner at Adi Abeto prison, he witnessed and heard people say the words “I’m next” and those in the prison saying, “I am better than those in underground prisons.” The experience made the vacationer feel the pinch, too, heard himself saying “me too, because many visitors from the USA were thrown into prisons, here.” The vacationer noticed that his inability to express his sympathy to those in over-ground and underground prisons as well as the tendency to watch his actions and guard his mouth were signs that he was being made into a prisoner by his feeling that he was surrounded by informants.
Who is Accountable and who has the Power to Set the Prisoners Free?
If the whole Eritrean population inside Eritrea are prisoners of the tyrant, as the tyrant admittedly states, those who have contract with him must be residing outside Eritrea. Although some pro-tyrant Eritrean Diasporas may not have desires and inclinations to participate in the political endeavors nor do they chant the tyranny slogans of “Isu Nihna, Nihna Isu.” Their non-participation is due to voices of conscience they adopted in their host countries. However, the diehard pro-tyrant Diasporas appear to support the notion of being involved in political projects of the regime, even in defending the tyrant with their blood. Those are the ones whose minds are stuck in the use of force to defend the tyrant and also they take pleasure in seeing Eritrean elderly and children taken to prisons. Yes, it is them also who take upon themselves the task of collecting donations to build more prisons, shamelessly commending their participation in such projects that turn them into criminals.
The diehard supporters may understand that when the tyrant states that “no one has contract with him,” signifies the Eritrean people inside Eritrea and not them, the Diaspora supporters. Otherwise, why would the Eritrean Diaspora supporters carry out their part as if they have contractual obligation unless each of them is a party to the contract?
Every time the tyrant refers to “no contract,” appears to be linking it to questions about refusal to turn over the power or implement the constitution. Then, who the one from among the Eritrean Diasporas would support the breaking of the promise to turn over the power or implement the constitution. It is a fair guess that unless the pro-tyrant Eritrean Diaspora clearly disagreed with the tyrant and told him that they do not support his diction of “No Contract,” they cannot deny that their blind support empowers the tyrant to practice his “no contract” to abuse power. It should be clear that the tyrant claims to be powered by “no contract” to commit all the terrifying atrocities against all Eritreans inside Eritrea and to defy the UN and the World.
Eritreans know well that only the use of force can remove the roots of tyranny and the tyrant; however, the opposition appears to be for peaceful transition because the country already bled enough. Unlike the tyrant, the opposition does not want to involve outside power or foreign forces. During the struggle days the people developed and maintained the capacity to fight together against the enemy of the Eritrean people. If the Eritrean people repeat that approach and give highest priority to their demand for the tyrant to set all Eritrean political prisoners free, there for sure would be a positive result.
The failure of the prisoners to break-free evidences that the prisoners are under highest-security with each prisoner in solitary confinement suffering from blindness, poor health, and probably mental conditions. Most of the political prisoners are veterans who must qualify and deserve well treatment. Indeed, the policy of easily throwing in prisoners and hard to free them resulted in rapid increase of prisons and so also the pains of the people. Similarly, holding elderly and very sick that are in vegetative state prisoners in solitary confinement is tarnishing the name of the country besides incriminating the pro-tyrant Eritrean Diasporas, specifically those 200,000 names and signatures in the petition list against UN’s action to save the prisoners. By signing the petition against the COIE (Commission of Inquiry on Human Rights in Eritrea), those pro-tyrant Eritrean Diasporas commended, supported and defended the tyrant’s abusive practices and violations against those Eritrean prisoners in the tyrant’s open-air and closed prisons.
The blame for the present and not the past abuses of power as to who are responsible for the imprisonments and sufferings of the Eritrean-prisoners falls on those 200,000 on the petition list, thus they should accept their responsibility. The sooner they realize and choose to free themselves from the blame; they can have their moment of clarity by not finding any excuse to continue to empower the tyrant. Their early departure from siding with the abuser will be a breakthrough and their participation, as witnesses in the fight against tyranny in Eritrea at courts of law, against the tyrant will help to end the problems of the Eritrean people. On the other hand, those who continue to empower the tyrant wilfully should not expect any lesser than what happened to the pro-abusive African leaders at the courts of Europe and North America.
Although easily and yet carefully all legal actions can be taken against those on the petition list, it will be politically wise to first go after those in charge of the list rather than holding all individually and collectively responsible for the sufferings of the innocent Eritrean prisoners in the tyrant’s prisons. No doubt, most of those on the petition list must be diehard supporters of the tyrant and are ready to go down the drain with the tyrant. Moreover, those diehard supporters as blind supporters hold onto hate of the innocent Eritreans, who are sufferings in prisons and those youth dying while attempting to flee to safety. Although the justice seekers can take legal actions, they should not be stuck in blaming only unless those on the petition list take courageous and painful decision to accept their responsibility and cease the tyrant to be powered by them to destroy the whole Eritrean people.
Considering the pro-tyrant Diasporas are independent supporters and are participating with their own free will, unlike the tyrant’s subjects inside Eritrea, they must have rights and duties in their participation of nurturing and strengthening the rule of the tyrant. At the time all those 200,000 names on the petition list are deemed to be guilty by virtue of their participation, they don’t have to wait until required to prove their innocence in a court of law. It is also their right to demand the release of all the elderly prisoners from the tyrant’s prisons and in so doing no one has the right to blame them for trying to get their tarnished names corrected.
It is only such direct confrontation and direct action to correct tarnished names can help to regularize tyranny practices while getting to know those who are behind all damages enabling the tyrant to claim “No Contract” and cause all sufferings to the innocent prisoners. Putting the blame games aside, the pro and the anti-tyrant Eritrean Diasporas can jointly seek explanations as to how the tyrant have ascended to the top of the ladder to claim the diction of “no contract” as well as how his lifetime comrades were ladder-descended into the lowest pits of earth to live like animals. Exploring the past causes and investigating the crimes committed can be left for tomorrow’s task so as to enable our immediate and top concerns of today to face them head-on and resolves them today and immediately. Even if quick fixes done to the Eritrean people’s problems, the solution will tear open all the doors and windows to let healthy and fresh air into the country without the involvement of foreign forces. Here, the Eritrean opposition should be commended for its position of not seeking outside help to solve the Eritrean problems and, as such, the pro-tyrant Diasporas should reciprocate by calling on the tyrant to release all the political prisoners. In the process, we should remember that no two opposing views can agree without first disagreeing, and no clarifications can be obtained without casting blames on one side as well as no new perspectives will flow without requiring explanations. Thus, knowing the process of getting to work together, the two Eritrean Diasporas should know that unless they work together they cannot stop those who are destroying the unity of the Eritrean people.
Clamoring for Attention to the Sufferings of the Eritrean Political Prisoners,