Patriots’ Victory Day

4 May 2017

A day of pride and gratitude, but don’t let us rest only on past laurels

On 5th May this year, Ethiopia celebrates the 76th Anniversary of the end of Italian occupation – brought about by her patriots’ 5 years (1935-1941) resistance to fascist Italy’s second attempt to turn Ethiopia into a fully-fledged colony – with a sense of pride of place at thwarting yet another attempt by fascist Italy to subjugate Ethiopia, as well as with gratitude to those who gave their yesterday for our today. The historical significance of the day is second to none.

Self-motivated, but compared to Italy poorly armed, patriots from the four corners of Ethiopia, driven by none other than that renowned Ethiopian die-hard resistance to foreign domination of any sort, and taking inspiration from the heroic deeds of their forefathers who had meted out a mortifying defeat on imperial Rome at the Battle of Adwa in1896, chose their own local co-ordinators – in the absence of a central command whose head, Ethiopia’s last Emperor, had left the country in order to appeal to the League of Nations – ignited a nation-wide resistance movement which, five years to the day, successfully dislodged fascist Italy from its Ethiopian power base.

The focal-point of The Day of Remembrance is Addis Ababa, where the President lays a wreath at the Cenotaph in Arat Kilo, before bemedaled and sabre-rattling veterans, whose number is dwindling as the years pass, march past invited guests and an adoring crowd of Addis Ababans. In recent years, however, there have been calls for the Prime Minister and the Speaker of the House of Peoples’ Representatives (HPR) as well as, in future, leaders of opposition parties with seats in the HPR, to follow suit, in line with Remembrance Day celebrations in developed democracies.

This year’s Patriots Victory Day comes as Ethiopia strives to achieve it democratisation and sustainable development, a journey that is not without challenges.  On the one hand, the continuation of last year’s El Nino-induced drought in parts of the Somali Regional State is overstretching the Government’s ability to address the devastating impact of drought by dipping deeper into the public purse as in 2015/2016. On the other hand, the nation’s union of nations, nationalities and peoples has come under attack from reactionary and extremist forces from within and without, at a time when the nation is in the midst of industrialisation. And who among Ethiopians, save a small number of quislings in the service of Ethiopia’s traditional enemies, would derive satisfaction from Ethiopia’s failure to conquer poverty and remain a shining example of an oasis of stability and tranquillity in a troubled Horn of Africa. So, it’s high time that Ethiopians realise that, while it is right and proper for us to observe, with pomp and ceremony, victories our fathers had secured for us, we also need to accept the dire truth that resting only on past laurels is a luxury that we can ill afford.

Seldom have Ethiopia’s obtaining conditions been so stunningly atmospheric as today for this generation of Ethiopians to write their own laurels; by exerting our concerted efforts we must defeat poverty in Guba as we defeated the Italians at Adwa. Ethiopian are surely writing their own laurels by buying GERD bonds and by proactively joining the war on poverty as they make use of the Government’s self-help initiatives for unemployed youth.

Have a wonderful Patriots Victory Day!

*** ENDS ***

Public Diplomacy Department, Embassy of Ethiopia, London SW7 1PZ

Email:     press@ethioembassy.org.uk

Web:       www.ethioembassy.org.uk

Latest News

Browse all
Leading Ethiopian botanical scientist, Professor Sebsebe Demissew, has been elected as a Foreign Member of the Royal Society, becoming the first ever Sub-Saharan African scientist to be elected in the Society’s 357-year history. Professor Sebsebe is recognised for his lifelong work on promoting Ethiopian biodiversity.
20 Jul 2018
Prof. Sebsebe becomes first African Foreign Member of the Royal Society
Further to PM Abiy’s recent call to the Ethiopian diaspora to contribute $1-a-day to the transformation and development of a better Ethiopia, the Commercial Bank of Ethiopia has officially opened a bank account to support the operation of the “Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund”.
18 Jul 2018
Ethiopian Diaspora Trust Fund account officially operational
Statements from UK and US governments, the African Union, Europian Union and the United Nations Security Council, with regards to the historic peace deal between Ethiopia and Eritrea.
17 Jul 2018
Ethio-Eritrea Peace Deal: The World Reacts
In a historic visit to Asmara, Ethiopia’s Prime Minister Abiy Ahmed and President Isaias Afewerki of Eritrea signed a Joint Declaration of Peace and Friendship ending 20 years of hiatus. This landmark visit led to the restoration of diplomatic relations between the two nations.
16 Jul 2018
Ethiopia and Eritrea enter new chapter of cooperation following historic peace deal
The Embassy has recently been made aware of some people engaging in fraudulent acts of soliciting money for the Diaspora Trust Fund, which is still in the process of being set up. Please do not to fall victim to any scams, the Embassy will officially announce the launch of the Trust Fund once it has gone public.
13 Jul 2018
IMORTANT NOTICE: DIASPORA TRUST FUND
London-based British artist Catherine Chambers’ portrait of her Ethiopian friend, Girma, is currently on display at the Royal Academy Summer Show, which runs until 19th August. In an exclusive with the Embassy, Catherine talks to us about her paintings and her love for Ethiopia.
10 Jul 2018
London Artist’s portrait of Ethiopian on display at the Royal Academy Summer Show
More than 300 guests attend a garden party to celebrate Ethiopia’s National Day, which commemorates the triumphant entry of EPRDF forces into Addis Ababa on 28th May 1991.
7 Jun 2018
National Day celebrated at time of renewal
From June 1, all international visitors to Ethiopia can apply for their visa online. This new initiative will promote tourism, trade, and investment to the country.
5 Jun 2018
Ethiopia launches e-visa service to all international visitors
The triumphant entry of the EPRDF forces into Addis Ababa on 28th May 1991 marked the closing of a turbulent chapter of Ethiopia’s history, and the opening of a new one that paved the way for the adoption of an all-inclusive federal and democratic system.
27 May 2018
Reinvigorating Democracy Through Reform
Manchester Airport secures landmark route into the heart of Africa, underlining its pivotal role in connecting the North to the world’s most important markets. Ethiopian Airlines will operate a four-times-a-week service to Addis Ababa from 1st December 2018.
14 May 2018
Ethiopian Airlines comes to Manchester Airport opening up Africa to the North
PM Abiy Ahmed's tenure as Prime Minister of Ethiopia has been characterised by a renewed sense of hope and determination in the country. In an effort to address public grievances the new Prime Minister has engaged in a series of public consultations while setting out the vision for reform going forward.
8 May 2018
Premier appoints new Cabinet, sets out early Reform Priorities