Fine Line: There is a sense of general uneasiness in the camp of the Revolutionary Democrats




There is a sense of general uneasiness in the camp of the Revolutionary Democrats, exactly one year from the national elections – to be held in May 2015; not for reasons many may suspect though, gossip observed.

Losing the election to their electoral challengers next year is the least of their worries, claims gossip. Their understanding of the opposition camp is no different from their historic perspective, according to gossip. They see an opposition camp that is fractured, disoriented, disorganised and polarised within its lot, claims gossip. If at all they fear the potential for a replay of 2005, it would be because they perceive an electorate that may choose to deprive them of votes in order to show its discontent and protest, gossip observed.

The discontent is as a result of public outcry and growing frustration over deteriorating governance and the poor quality provision of public services, claims gossip.

The top brass of the EPRDFites appear to have accepted that a governing party in the run up to national elections – while large numbers of the public continuously complain about the lack of good governance – has little chance to win on its own merit, claims gossip. Add to this the inexcusable deterioration in the provision of public services from water to electricity, and from communications services to transport, gossip says.

While their campaign committee may try hard to sell the ongoing mega projects across the country, and the reconstruction of the capital, the Revolutionary Democrats appear to understand that the appalling inconvenience voters are forced to bear makes their electoral bid hard to sell, according to gossip.

However, little is more disturbing to them than the level of corruption that is getting increasingly systemic by the day, claims gossip. Despite a long held culture of “criticism and self-criticism”, the number of those with the courage to point their fingers at others in the party is shrinking, says gossip. There is a great deal of apprehension as to whether the Revolutionary Democrats have come to the end of the road in their determination to fight corruption within their rank and file, claims gossip.

Politics in Ethiopia is “seasonal”, some of their leaders would say; thus, it is very difficult to predict what will transpire in the Ethiopian political landscape over the next 12 months, according to gossip. Who would have thought the “CUD” phenomenon would have had an engulfing outcome over the nation only four months prior to voting date back in 2005, some at the gossip corridors wonder.

Yet, an incumbent entering into an electoral battle with baggage such as this does give little comfort and reason to calm its campaign strategists, claims gossip.

With hardly any uncertainty on their part about the outcome of the election, the EPRDFites see that they will find it difficult to get consolation from any electoral gains, claims gossip. They will get elected because voters have no formidable opponents to turn to, despite their deep dissatisfaction over the incumbent’s failings, according to gossip.

Some of the EPRDFites have come to accept that the upcoming election will be about an unhappy electorate boxed between an incumbent whose shortcomings are glaringly unsettling and an opposition far from ready to take on the challenge, gossip observed. They are not certain if one year is enough to change the tide in their favour, claims gossip.



Published on April 27, 2014 [ Vol 14 ,No 730]


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