Since the assumption of power by the Ethiopian people’s Revolutionary Democratic Front (EPRDF) and the Eritrean People’s Liberation Front (EPLF) at the end of May 1991, conditions in Ethiopia are fast leading toward a state of civilwar engulfing the whole nation. The major reason is the policy of balkanization of the country along „ethinic“ lines adopted by the EPRDF as basic to its programm of divide and rule.
This has led to the unnecessary intensification of regional, cultural, ethnic, and religious confrontations with the potential of dismembering the country, the consequences of which are broad and harmful to all. In the abscence of a strong voice on behalf of all Ethiopians who deplore this impending fratricidal catastrophe, and because of the urgency of the situation, it has become necessary to organize Ethiopians commited to peace, unity and democracy, equality, and developement for the purpose of producing a unified and dedicated leadership to save the country from artificially induced ethnic conflagration. With this as a central them, an independant, multi-ethnic and united parzy called THE ETHIOPIAN MEDHIN DEMOCRATIC PARTY (MEDHIN) has been established. The party, at ist founding congress, adopted the following statement of principles and objectives.

The Rule of Law and Civil Rights

Medhin strongly believes that the state has primary responsiblity of safeguarding, nurturing and ensuring the human and democratic rights of citizens. These include certain inalienable rights such as the right to life, liberty and theright to own property in which the state cannot arbitrarily interfer. Medhin is committed to the primacy of the rule of law in all acts of government and to the prohibition of any violation of the rights of citizens without due process of law.

Thus Medhin advocates the elimination of any act of torture or exessive use of force on the human person, imprisonment or detention without due process of law, searches and seizures without a court warrant, and abridgement of the right of movement, of freedom of expression, thought and religion, of the right to a free press, and of the right to fair compensation for properties appropriated by the state for public use. There will be equality before the law for all citizens without regard to sex, religion, race, or ethnic origin. There will be an independent and impartial judicial system safeguarding individual rights. In this regard, Medhin unequivocally adopts the UN and OAU declerations on humanrights as its own.

Multi-Party Federal Democracy

Medhin advocates the establishment of a parliamentary federal multi-party democracy in Ethiopia. This will be accomplished by subdividing the country with the full consent and participation of the people, in to self-governing entities (Rasgez kilil). These self-governing entities or regions will become the conistituent members of the Ethiopian Federation. Medhin strongly believes that democratic federalism will bring about a sharing of political power between the federal government, the self governing regions, and the people. Medhin believes that it is only when the people participate freely in the affairs of the their governmentthat the social, political, and economic crisis Ethiopians have faced over the last several decades could be resolved satisfactorily. Medhin proposes to consider the constitutions of the United States , India and Switzerland as reference models in the careful drafting of a federal constitution for Ethiopia.

Ethiopia like many countries in the world, is a mosaic of numerous regional, cultural, and linguistic groups, each proud of ist own history, culture and language. Medhin is strongly commited to the principle of the equality of all the groups that constitutes Ethiopia. To realize this principle the government shall provide sufficient commitment and legal protection to enhance and develop the cultures and languages of each of the diverse groups in the nation, and guarantee the free and open participation in the affairs of their government. This, Medhin believes, can be achieved by devolving power through a decentralised system of a federal structure with self-govrning regions as constituent members of the federation.

Free Market Economy

Medhin is commited to a free market economic system for Ethiopia. No limits shall be put on the rights of citizens to engage, individually or jointly, in the production and distribution of goods and services. Private land ownership shall not be restricted. The state shall encourage and safeguard the operation of a free market system, provide necessary social services and build the country’s infrastructure to facilitate the operation of a free market economy.Foreign investors will be encouraged, through conductive incentives, to participate in the economic activity of the country and to introduce modern technology. The state shall provide scientific and technical support to farmers to enable them to improve productivity, achieve food self sufficiency, and to facilitate the marketing and distribution of farm products.

Ethiopia’s Unity

Medhin is committed to Ethiopia’s unity, souverinity and territorial integrity as a nation-state which extends to her internationally recognized borders on land, air, and sea. Medhin is committed to the principle of the rights of nations to self determination, a principle which served the sacred purpose of liberation from colonial domination, and which is consistent with the principle of the souvereignty and territorial integrity of nation-states as enshrined in the U.N. Charter and other international covenants. Medhin does not subscribe to the erroneous notion that the principle of self determination can be used to break up a souvereign state on the basis of race, religion, cilture, or ethnicity.

Peace and Reconciliation

Medhin believes that the mutual interests of the diverse groups in Ethiopia by far exceed their differences and special interests. As a result, Medhin is strongly committed to a peaceful resolution of disputes through an independent and impartial judicial system. It will establish relevant, customary dispute settlement institutions both at the federal and regional levels of government, and will encourage and promote the resolution of such disputes through dialogue, and negotiation.
Furthermore, Medhin will work for the immediate convening of a genuinely representative all-inclusive national reconciliation conference focusing on the critical political, ethnic, religious, and cultural problems facing the country.

Foreign Policy

Medhin believes that Ethiopia’s foreign policy should be based on the principles of peaceful relations, mutual respect, and non-interference in the internal affairs of any nation state. It expresses its commitment to all international obligations that Ethiopia entered into freely, legaly, and on the basis of equality. It is committed to co-operation in all matters of global concern and shall work towards the implementation of the principles enunciated in the Charters of the Organization of African Unity, the United Nation and ist affiliates, other regional and international organizations.

Conclusion

Medhin is committed to establish a federal, multi-party democracy firmly rooted in the principles of freedom, equality, liberty and justice for all. It is dedicated to rid Ethiopia of war, hunger, disease, poverty and economic backwardness by marshalling its human and natural resources. Recognizing that inter-ethnic harmony and reconciliation is a prerequisite to national unity and economic development, Medhin will place at the top of ist national agenda the process of discourse for the peaceful resolution of the sectarian and ethnic conflicts generated by the policies of EPRDF. Medhin is committed to the use of dialogue and negotiations to resolve domestic, regional and international conflicts whenever and wherever possible. In furtherance of its stated objectives, Medhin will co-operate with all democratic forces, inside and outside the country, commited to the principles of freedom, equality, justice and the unity of Ethiopia.

 
Free press for free people, transparency and accountability of governace
and strength of democracy