(IAG)vision is a Horn of Africa where human rights are respected, democratic culture flourished IAG is an independent, non-profit, non-governmental regional organization established in 1989 with a mission of supporting sustainable development, strengthening democratic institutions and promoting peace and security in the Horn of Africa, namely Ethiopia, Eritrea, Sudan, Somali, Kenya, Uganda and Djibouti, while also dealing with issues that have wider relevance to the continent.
We are witnessing an extraordinary wave of uprisings that began in Tunisia and Egypt at the start of 2011 and have unleashed a democratic fervor for basic political rights all across the North Africa and the Middle East – a region which, for so long and by so many, had been considered hopeless as regards fundamental democratic change. Yet, this is a political development of global, not just regional, importance. Notwithstanding the vital geopolitical as well as geo-economic importance of the region, the uprisings are pregnant with governance implications whose potential significance extends beyond North Africa and the Middle East.
The Horn of Africa has a lengthy history of both intra-state and inter-state conflicts. Over the years, numerous and various types of peace initiatives and agreements have been tried to mitigate and/or resolve them. There is an increasingly noticeable effort on the part of regional and international institutions aimed at peace building in the sub-region. While each peace effort has had its own success or failure, none has yet achieved success in building a stable sub-region.
Inter Africa Group hosted the third conference on Constitutionalism and Human Security in the Horn of Africa at the Intercontinental Hotel, Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, on December 8th 2009. The conference covered themes addressing power sharing, the applicability of different forms of governance to the Horn of Africa, and intergovernmental relations.
The nature of federalism in Ethiopia was addressed from varied perspectives as well. Mr. Tamrat Kebede,Executive Director of InterAfrica Group, provided the introductory remarks for the meeting. He outlined the themes to be covered by the presenters which included, conflict management through power
sharing, sustainment of effective intergovernmental relations, and the
institutionalization of effective democratic governance to federal capital…
In the past four decades the Ethiopian agrarian policy has undergone major reforms starting with the land reform of 1975, including, the Ethiopian Peoples Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) 1991 Agriculture Development Led Industrialization Policy (ADLI) and the 2003 Rural Land Certification Program. The various types of communal and private ownership of land that existed previously were abolished and replaced by public ownership of land with the 1975 land reform legislation, which was the first legal measure to end the exploitative landlord- tenant relation and introduce social justice in rural Ethiopia.
Inter Africa Group held a Symposium on Agrarian Technology and Food Security in Ethiopian Pastors list Areas on October 7th 2010, at Harmony Hotel, Addis Ababa.
The symposium served as a forum for deliberation on food security and pastors list livelihoods, identifying the history and challenges of said topics in the political, economic and policy arena’s of the Ethiopian landscape.
A participant questioned how tradition evolves into modernity, and the double standard employed by female intellectuals who want to restructure the gender equation to include equality, yet promote the maintenance of tradition.
There needs to be a differentiation between ideology and the realities on the ground. Another partici-pant raised the issue of gender based violence, for example the use of rape as a weapon during the Rwandan genocide. The participant questioned whether the AU, IGAD and other regional organiza-tions include women in their peacemaking activities. Another participant raised the issue of women’s roles in Islamist movements.
As you may recall, in 1992 and 2000 InterAfrica Group had organized a number of symposiums covering a range of policy issues related to the overall economic performance of Ethiopia. In our consideration of this year’s symposium, it was noted that reviews of macro and sectorial economic performance are conduct-ed regularly by several research institutions including the World Bank, the African Development Bank, the Ethiopian Economic Association/ Ethiopian Policy Research Institute and others.