Dear diaspora guy, long time ago, when you felt bored with bitter life under despotic rulers, you fled your country across Bole (airport) or Bale (bordering Zone) thinking of the old saying ‘London streets are paved with gold’. When you were labelled as reactionary by the undemocratic government of your country, you ran away to save your life… You fled your beloved country to seek better life in your dreamland. In general, when you felt unhappy about everything in your country, you decided to seek asylum in Uncle Sam’s country. Once you were in that country, you came up with a prefabricated history to get residence permit. It was a relief for you that you led much better life than that of the unpleasing one you had endured in your mother land.
There in that advanced country you were legally considered as a human being and provided with whatever you asked for. You were given first class citizenship. You were granted the privilege of voting… You cast ballot to elect whatever party or individual candidate you loved. All your civil, political, economic and human rights were respected. You were legally protected to enjoy every right enshrined in the constitution of that country. You had chances to go to school and develop your way of thinking… You were impressed by the democratic culture of the nation who believe in freedom, justice and equality of opportunity. You whistled with surprise to witness how a black American won a presidential election and took hold of the rein of that big country. The astonishing thing is that in that country there can hardly be any sane individual who violates your rights. Of course, after the education that was believed to bring about mental and attitudinal change within you, you don’t allow anyone to touch the sleeve of your shirt. You don’t want anyone to ask you to clear off that country… How kind and generous the people and the government are. Probably you wished to see such things happening in your poor country. Did you not?
You stayed up overseas countries for years and came back to your mother land. You were expected to do a lot of productive things taking in to account your advanced ‘education’ and experiences of many years. But it is a pity that your brain has not absorbed anything worthwhile. Many vital things that must be absorbed bounced back the moment they touched your rubber brain. Dear brother, there must be something wrong within you. Did these ferenjis take out something from your good-for-nothing brain?
Once you were back home, you felt pompous and considered yourself better than the common local people… You speak boastfully that others should draw experience from you. As our people are decent and look in to things patiently, they may not say a word concerning your conceit. You take this for ignorance or stupidity… You come forward and tell the people to do whatever you want. Our people do not want to hurt feelings of others and remain submissive for the time being. You ignorantly seize this opportunity and act irresponsibly… You feel so conceited that you start misleading people to commit illegal action against others. You don’t care whether what you are doing will have adverse impacts on the people and the country. In this way, you keep on reflecting your hidden xenophobic nationalism. Eventually, your kith and kin feel that something is wrong within you.
Sometime your conscience will nudge at you and say the following. Of course, you don’t give a damn to take heed. Your mind has been shrouded by dollars, birr, diamonds, modernized vehicles… Hey, listen! Don’t forget the appreciation you gave to the foreigners who accepted you as an immigrant. You appreciated the ferenjis for their kindness to give you what you needed… You felt that the people who granted you economic and political asylum were very kind to provide you with education and skill training. But, dear sullen boy, your brain has been filled with cruelty… So brim-full that it has no vacant space large enough to suck the good things. That’s why you are now doing what is not expected from an ‘educated’ or ‘intellectual’ guy like you… Have you ever been asked by those people to leave their country? Did they call you settler or invader? Did they ask you to grab your luggage and clear off their country? You know no one will do such rude and illegal actions.
Let me remind you two incidents that show how democracy has long been flourishing in those advanced countries in which you were farting around for years. An Ethiopian guy named Alexander Assefa has won a seat in Nevada State Assembly in USA. Did you hear that? The Americans who elected this Ethiopian are not racist like you. They did never say that the Ethiopian guy should not deserve the chance to elect or be elected for that big position. You see! … How can you judge the measure taken by French president, Emmanuel Macron to appoint a Senegalese-born lady, Sibeth Ndiaye as his government’s new spokesperson? What would you do if you were a French citizen? Would you come out to street along with your co-workers to oppose it? Or would you blow your whistle of war? Look, these people who gave respect to those Africans are not scoundrel like you. They have not been blinded with sullen, hate, jealousy and xenophobia. They weigh individuals by their knowledge and capacity not by their race or ethnicity.
Mind you, first you hated living under the despotic regime and left for another country to lead life as an immigrant. The bad political system here was the major cause for your migration. When things seemed to get better, you came back to your country and started doing the same ugly works of the old tyrants. Many people expected you to support the national efforts being made to establish better political system in this country. If this was not possible, it would be much better for you to engage yourself in civil works… You bragged that you were educated… you said you have learnt a lot from the advanced nations. But how unfortunate we are! You, the ‘educated’ one, are the major actor for the chaos being orchestrated in this country. Many people have thus been forced to migrate for the very problem being witnessed across the country because of you and your collaborators.
Dear sullen guy, while you were away in overseas countries, did you have friends who came from Japan, China, Singapore, Malaysia…? Do you know how these people support their countries? Yes, you know. After acquiring the knowledge and skills, they fly back home to work for the betterment of their people. They do not organize people to revolt against their own governments. They do not disseminate hate, enmity or hostility among their people… They do not preach xenophobia… They do not use their knowledge to annihilate their countries.
Let me tell you one thing. It is about animals. Animals, like dogs and lions, are said to put boundary marks on their living sites. They pee on trees, hedges, fences… or they rub their fur against these things to mark the border of their domain. They don’t want any other animals to trespass on their territory. If any animal crosses over their territory, it will face fierce fighting. I feel there is no difference of acts between you and these animals. The animals don’t allow interference by others. Similarly, you don’t want other ethnic groups to live with you. The absurdity is that you were in other countries living with others who respected all your rights.
Dear sullen guy, let me ask you some final questions. Up on your coming back home, what did you do to the people of this country? I mean, did you advise young people to be serious on their education? Did you show them how to wrangle free from poverty? Have you ever taken time to give social services to your people? Did you take time to convince rich local people to build schools, hospitals, drinking water schemes and access roads in your area…?
The writer can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org