Bekele Gerba lectured in English at Addis Ababa University. In August 2011 he was sentenced to eight years, reduced on appeal to 3 years, and imprisoned for being being a member of the banned Oromo Liberation Front. Declared a Prisoner of Conscience by Amnesty International Bekele was sent to the notorious Kality high security prison where he was housed among deadly criminals. While in prison he became very ill but being a Christian believer in non violence he did manage to find time to translate the works of Martin Luther King to Afan Oromo in a soon to be published book.
Bekele Gerba was released in April 2015.
Bekele Gerba was re arrested in December 2015
Bekele Gerba again released on Tuesday 13th February 2018
This painting is about the OROMO PEOPLES of Ethiopia.
There are over 40,000,000 Oromo. Yes.
An ancient peoples making up around 40% of Ethiopia's population they have their own Gadaa system of governance which is no longer widely practiced but remains influential.The embem of Gadaa is the Odaa or sacred sycamore tree.under whose shade and source of tranquility assemblies were held both religious and sociopolitical.
The current government and president of Ethiopia continue the repression of the Oromo peoples that has persisted for well over 20 years.
UPDATE 1st JULY 2020 Bekele Gerba arrested: see more here
BEKELE GERBA ETHIOPIA
oil on canvas 150cm x 110cm