People from East Gojjam/Gaffat people who lived in South Ethiopia, Maji Zone, Begurafarda Woreda sought compensation from South Ethiopia Peoples’ Regional Government. Last week on ETV Southern Ethiopia Governor, Mr. Shiferaw Shigute Admitted relocation of 800 people whom he thought committed environmental harm, but rejected exaggeration. Some claim larger figures than officially stated. The governor also clarified that return to their original home was arranged in collaboration with Amhara Regional Government. He reported also more than 1,500 people are still living in their villages. He emphasized the citizens have constitutional rights to live and work in anywhere, Ethiopia. His government was concerned with environmental protection not on ethnicity.
His Excellency Prime Minister Melese Zenaw, whom asked by Parliament members to comment on the issue on April 17, 2012, described situation, as follows: The information disseminated was irresponsible and non-founded; there are 24,000 East Gojjamis in Begurafarda Woreda, Maji Zone who live and administrator themselves. Resettlement was acceptable; only one thing was mistaken that was disorganized private resettlement which led to adverse environmental engagement. Indeed, he said, Amhara Regional State and South Ethiopia Peoples’ governments have reached on consensus to continue resettlement in an organized state sponsor manner.
Some people who left their village claimed they left hundreds of thousands of property and sought recovery or adequate compensation. Observers also share this view, the observers say in Ethiopian relocation regulations, they should be automatically eligible for proper compensation, no matter whether relocation is carried out for investment or environmental protection. One of displaced persons said, they would continue to bring their case to the attention of the Prime Minister unless they are compensated fully or return to their villages. Another young person hoped Investigation Committee formed by Mr. Shigute would come up with fair remedy to the crisis.
Like part of South Gondar, the People of East Gojjam, historically known as Gaffat people, one of Agaw clans who contributed civilization in the medieval era. The Gaffat language is believed to be by now extinct. Professor Muse Tegegne the man who renamed Gojjam to Felege Ghion declared the people of ‘Gojjam’ were not Amhara. The declaration was made in June, 1991, in the manifesto entitled, Ghion Liberation Front in the name of Gojjam people. Later on, the same manifesto and book, Stigma ‘Gojjam’
Abbyssianian Pariah (first edition) sent to heads of states of all nations. The objectives of correspondence intended to: introduce the identity of the habitants, seek support for planned Orit Shengo, Confederal State. Professor Muse received letters in reply from US President Bill Clinton, Britain Prime Minister Toney Blair and President of Eritrea, Yisayas Afeworki in acknowledgement to his efforts to disclose the reality. See also Gaffat