Compatibility of State Constitutions with the FDRE Constitution: The Case of Oromiya and Benishangul-Gumuz Regional States

Gana, Aman Shuge (2014) Compatibility of State Constitutions with the FDRE Constitution: The Case of Oromiya and Benishangul-Gumuz Regional States. Masters thesis, Addis Ababa University.

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The 1995 FDRE Constitution has allocated the state power between Federal and states or sub-national units. The regional states are sketched based on Ethnic territorial approach to safeguard the multi-ethnic interests within the country. To this end, the federal constitution is adopted in a more accommodative way giving special emphasis to the group rights of all the Nation, Nationality, and Peoples of Ethiopian. This is clearly declared by the spirit of common consensus amongst them in the preamble that reads as “We the Nations, Nationalities and Peoples of Ethiopia” strongly committed, in full and free exercise our rights to self-determination, to building a political community founding on the rule of law and capable of ensuring a lasting peace, guaranteeing a democratic order and advancing our economic and social development; firmly convinced that the fulfillment of this objective requires full respect of individual and people's fundamental freedoms and rights to live together on the basis of equality and without any sexual, religious or cultural discrimination;…. Moreover, the FDRE Constitution equally bestowed the Sovereignty and self-determination right to Nations, Nationalities and Peoples of Ethiopia under Article 8 and 39 respectively. Pursuant to Article 8 of the federal Constitution, all sovereign power resides in the Nations, Nationalities and Peoples of Ethiopia. In the same fashion, in article 39 also, the nations, nationalities and peoples are equally granted the right to self-determination and up to succession. Defining "Nation, Nationality or People" a group of people who have or share a large measure of a common culture or similar customs, mutual intelligibility of language, belief in a common or related identities, a common psychological make-up, and who inhabit an identifiable, predominantly contiguous territory, made this right(right to self-determination) absolutely territorial in nature in sub article 5 of article 39 and under sub article 2 and 3 of the same article, it has reserved the so called the group specific rights such as the right to speak, write and to develop its own language; to develop and promote its own culture; and to preserve its history; the right to equitable representation in state and federal governments in addition to universal rights provided in chapter three of the constitutions for the minorities ethnic groups those do not meet the above definition but residing somewhere in Ethiopia within those who meet the above definition. Accommodating the multi-ethnic interest this way, the FDRE constitution explicitly lists down the federal powers, the state powers, concurrent powers, and leaves residual powers to the states. Pursuant to their power, the regions are authorized to enact their Own constitution within the considerable “constitutional spaces” they are granted, respecting the supremacy of the federal constitution as provided in article 9(1). However, the regional states, specially the Oromiya and Benishangul-Gumuz regional states constitutions, starting from their preamble they tried to weigh down the existence of another resident ethnic groups in the regions expressly proclaiming the sovereignty right and the ownership status of the region only for the indigenous or majority ethnic groups (the only holders of territorial rights) as per article 39(5) of the FDRE constitution. Furthermore, they have denied the non-territorial group specific rights of the minorities or non-indigenous ethnic groups by not incorporating them in their constitution as guaranteed in article 39(2&3) of FDRE Constitution. With the denial of these rights they systematically denied the universal rights of the resident ethnic groups of their regions, which is simultaneously inconsistence with that of the FDRE Constitution as per article 9(1) of the same. Having looked at this way and otherwise, specifically selecting some fundamental rights, specially non-territorial rights (Universal and group specific rights), the thesis has scrutinized that the way these rights are incorporated or treated and even miss incorporated in the Constitutions of the regional states at issue are in compatible to the FDRE Constitution opposite what expected of them.

Item Type: Thesis (Masters)
Subjects: J Political Science > JS Local government Municipal government
K Law > K Law (General)
Divisions: Africana
Depositing User: Tim Khabala
Date Deposited: 24 May 2018 14:10
Last Modified: 24 May 2018 14:10

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