The Caucus of Opposition Parties was established in June 2020
Addis Abeba – The Caucus of Opposition Parties (CoP), an umbrella of eleven opposition groups in Ethiopia, expressed their opposition to the extension of the state of emergency in the Amhara region for four months last week.
In a statement sent to Addis Standard, the caucus emphasized that a state of emergency does not provide a permanent solution to popular demands and public grievances, pointing out that over the past five years of “reform,” emergency decrees have frequently been used “to suppress public demands, but instead of resolving issues, they often worsened the situation or had unintended consequences.”
The caucus which, among other parties, has the Oromo Federalist Congress (OFC), Oromo Liberation Front (OLF), Ogaden National Liberation Front (ONLF), Hebir Ethiopia, Arena Tigray Party, Wolaita National Movement (WNM) and Afar People’s Party (APP) as its members, stressed that repeating the same actions and expecting different results is an “irresponsible approach” that fails to address the fundamental issues at hand.
The parties argued that the state of emergency has failed to address the public’s demands and has led to abuses and injustices, including drone attacks and violations of human rights, even affecting public representatives. They asserted that such actions are contradictory to the proclaimed intentions of upholding the rule of law and protecting citizens’ rights.
Reiterating their stance, the caucus emphasized that a permanent solution to the political challenges in Ethiopia requires an inclusive, participatory approach led by a reliable institution, based on the rule of law, national consensus, and reconciliation.
The caucus which was established in June 2022 called on the ruling party/government to reconsider the extension of the state of emergency and urged them to pursue an honest, inclusive, and sustainable common solution. They also appealed to human rights defenders, democratic institutions, and regional, continental, and international organizations friendly to Ethiopia to support the people and contribute positively to the situation.
The Caucus issued similar statement in August 2023 when the state of emergency was first declared saying that government’s attempts to resolve conflicts and subsequent political instability across the country by force including declaring a state of emergency is pushing the country to the brink. AS