Declaration of ONLF 4th Congress The Ogaden National Liberation Front held its 4th congress in Godey, Shabeelle region of the Somali state (Ogaden) between November 2nd to 12th, 2019.

The Congress which was held in the Somali state for the first time since 1998, was successfully concluded and a new leader chosen democratically, while the previous chairman retired voluntarily and was recognized as one of the noted fathers of the Somali national struggle.

The delegates reflected on the long national struggle of the Somali people for national self-determination, social justice and equality, where hundreds of thousands lost their lives and at times, where superpowers and states became involved thus complicating and the distorting the cause of the people and further complicating the search for just solutions.

The delegates concluded that despite claims of redress to the People’s genuine grievances, still the Somali people’s rights in Ethiopia were never addressed probably and there is a long way to go to get parity with other nations in Ethiopia.

Furthermore, the delegates examined key issues about the current situation in Ogaden, the wider Ethiopia and the Horn of Africa.

The congress also assessed and discussed the peace agreement and its implementation process and the current socio-political, economic and security of the Somali people and the Somali state.

In addition, the Congress discussed the Somali people’s relationship with neighbors on all sides of the state’s borders and stressed the need to address any conflicts through peaceful means while pointing out the relative disadvantage the Somali people have in the power structures at the federal level that has historically prejudiced the Somali people in all land and border disputes.

Having contemplated those and other issues, the Congress declares that it
1. Reaffirms the continuation of the Somali peoples quest for genuine self-determination for more than half a century and the current imperfect self-rule is a minimum reflection of the exercise of national self-determination. The congress stresses that stability and peace of all nations in Ethiopia depends on enriching and further devolving more powers to the nation based federalism and warns all stakeholders of the dangers of curtailing or demolishing the gains that the nations have earned through the bloods of millions.

2. Reaffirmed ONLF decision to seek the rights of the Somali people through peaceful and democratic means and fully supports the peace agreement between ONLF and the Ethiopian government.

3. Appreciates the new Ethiopian government decision to open democratic space in Ethiopia and hopes that the Ethiopian government to continue upholding its promises.

4. Urges the Ethiopian federal to start implementing the remaining elements of the peace agreement, including the formation of the joint committee in order to address key grievances that are the root causes of the conflict and start the rehabilitation and resettlement process in order to integrate the combatants and their dependents.

5. Urges that the Federal Government initiate a comprehensive multi-faceted program of dealing with the past and healing the wounds of war in the Somali state, which was the most affected.

6. Reminds the federal government and the Somali state government the fact that ONLF has registered as political party does not end the states’ obligation to rehabilitate and resettle ONLF combatants and leadership.

7. Informs the federal government that the Somali people have grave concern regarding issues of natural resources and land and therefore recommends that the federal government initiates proper consultations with all genuine stakeholders before embarking on the implementation of any project.

8. Calls upon the leadership to seek compensation of the victims of war in the Somali state.

9. Urges the Somali state government to get more committed to good governance and provide the people adequate public services, while paying more attention to the victims of war.

10. Urges the Somali state government to seriously act in stopping inter-clan conflicts and disarm errant clans.

11. Calls upon the Somali people to strengthen their unity and work in unison to further their interests without prejudice to others.

12. Strongly urges the Somali people to be vigilant and protect their territory against any attempt to use it as a base to harm others.

13. Believes that peaceful resolution of border conflicts is more beneficial to all nations and calls upon neighboring nations resolve their differences through negotiations and arbitration rather than the gun.

14. Calls upon all stakeholders, including state structures, political parties, intellectuals, civil society members, religious and traditional elders to engage in genuine, frank dialogue on key issues that kept all nations in Ethiopia at war with the state or each other, since Ethiopia is at cross road and decisions taken today will determine the future of all.

15. Calls upon the international community to support the peace process in the Somali state, since this conflict has severe ramifications in the whole Horn of Africa region.

Finally the Congress calls upon the Somali people to support the ONLF which is committed to furthering the interest of the Somali people, including the right to self-determination as well as to all other oppressed nations in Ethiopia.

Godey, Shabeelle, the Somali State (Ogaden)
November 23, 2019

Tel +251915-09 48 17 foreign@onlf.org.


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