Issayas Afeworki: “I Know You Call Me Agame Behind My Back”!

Last year I read an article on the internet written by someone who claimed that in his recently published book “Eritrea at a Crossroads”, Andebrhan Welde Giorgis stated that Issayas Afeworki told him some years back that he ‘brought independent Eritrea into existence’ and that he ‘is going to destroy it’ himself as well. In reaction to what I read on the internet, I wrote a brief article then in which I questioned whether or not Issayas Afeworki really said what Andebrhan Welde Giorgis has claimed in his recent book. Moreover, I also stated if it could be confirmed that Andebrhan has indeed made such a claim in his book, it could be safely said that by withholding such vital security information from the Eritrean people for so many years, he has done a great disservice to Eritrea and its people.

Issayas AfeworkiAndebrhan Woldegiorgis

I now have the 661-page book in my possession and have read 322 pages. Having read half of the book, I can now confirm that Andebrhan Welde Giorgis has indeed asserted the above-stated vulgar remarks Isayas to have allegedly uttered to him while he was under the influence of alcohol. Indeed, on page 322, Andebrhan has stated: “Isayas presides over a society where self-identity is deeply rooted in paternal ancestry and which, despite its enthusiastic initial embrace, he knows he has alienated and no longer accepts him. He has thus turned a non-issue into an abuse in his mind’s eye, because of which he suffers from a rejection complex verging on an identity crisis that occasionally surfaces when under the influence of alcohol or seized of drunken brawls.” Having said this, he then goes on to add the following in a footnote: “In one incident, Isayas blurted, ‘I know that you call me Agame behind my back. I will show you! I will take this country down as I put it up.’”

I therefore still believe and uphold my earlier remarks that by his continuous active collaboration with a leader who has openly boasted that he would destroy Eritrea, and by his utter failure to disclose this vital security information in a timely fashion to the Eritrean people, Andebrhan Welde Giorgis has committed an unpardonable act.

In addition, it is also popularly believed that Andebrhan Welde Giorgis has betrayed at a critical moment his “Comrades” known as the G-15. The G-15 is a group of former Eritrean high-ranking government officials that sharply disagreed with the Eritrean President about the way in which Eritrea was governed. At the time of their arrest in 2001, the G-15 were very busy mobilizing their colleagues and others to petition the Eritrean dictator to convene a meeting in order to discuss and address all outstanding issues of national concern. Haile Woldetensae (Durue) was playing the leading role in organizing, mobilizing and collecting signatures to petition the megalomaniac and power-hungry President of Eritrea. Haile Woldetensae (Durue) was also the first Eritrean nationalist politician who made a damning open criticism in front of the more than 3000 Eritreans gathered at the 1999 Eritrean Festival in Frankfurt, Germany, about the way in which Eritrea was being governed and the manner in which the 1998-2000 war against Ethiopia was being conducted under the leadership of the Eritrean President, Issayas Afeworki. He was also the first to call for reforming governmental institutions and for the immediate implementation of the 1997 ratified Eritrean constitution.

Having made the above remarks, I would now like to pose some questions to readers: do you think Issayas Afeworki really tell Andebrahan Weldegiorgis what he has claimed in his recently published Book? And do you think also Andebrahan Weldegiorgis acted in the right way for withholding for so many years such very important information from the Eritrean people? Let me hear your views.

Drs. Tsegezab Gebregergis, London, July 10, 2015.