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AAU’s Cultural Centre hosts a Night of Great Artistic Performance

The Addis Ababa University (AAU) Cultural Center, hosted an artistic evening under the theme of “I am Ethiopia” with the presence of many famous poets, journalists, singers, artists, university scholars and invited guests at the historic Mekonnen Hall on August 27, 2021.

Assis. Prof. Tesfaye Eshetu, Director at the Center, said that the AAU Cultural Center has historically been a leading voice for the masses in Ethiopia expanding genuine ideas and been source of the truth to the beloved Ethiopia for decades.

Tesfay stated, “For me, Ethiopia is more than just being a citizen. I am a country. The reality of being a nation wants to say, “I am Ethiopia, I am a country,” so that the reality of being a country can live in our minds and hearts, emotions, spirits and bodies.”

“An Ethiopian who lives in Ethiopia and does not care about his country and does not have any feeling about Ethiopia and who is attacking his country with an enemy with an Ethiopian passport is an Ethiopian by name but not Ethiopia,” Tesfaye added.

Izra Abate (PhD), Dean at ALLE School of Fine Arts and Design, on his part said the AAU Cultural Center has been a major platform for the university community and other scholars to express their views in contemporary political, cultural and economic ideas through poetry, theatre, music and arts.

“On this artistic night, it is an opportunity for us to see the horizons of the idea that I am Ethiopia from a different perspective and to have a chance to explore more,” Izra noted.

“It is not difficult to imagine how much an individual can expand his horizons of thought and understanding when he claims to be a country. I believe that today’s audience will get a wide range of ideas in your poems, scripts and music,” Izra remarked further.

Bedilu Wakjira (PhD), in his poems reflected that the country as a draft and a complex agreement that binds the people to their flags and does not limit the people by race, language or ethnicity.

“A country is a place where a person raises his flag in times of peace and exalts himself in times of war, destroying the invaders and defending the sovereignty of the country,” Bedilu asserted.

“A country, on the other hand, is a citizen or a party that relies on times of trouble, rejoices in times of joy, co-lives, co-struggles, and enjoys together,” Bedilu stated firmly.

Professor Tassew Weldehanna, President of AAU, said that the University is also known as “Little Ethiopia”, is indeed an example of a country where Ethiopian youth come together from different parts of the country to acquire knowledge.

Prof. Tassew further stated that AAU is an institution where students from all over Ethiopia come to the University to gain national representation and deep understanding beyond their environment and identity.

According to Prof Tassew, Addis Ababa University is a small country that is a model of a great Ethiopia where learners of diverse ethnicities can practice their way of life through education and interaction in the context of academic life.

Tassew added that Addis Ababa Universityis a center of universal personality excellence where students can enrich themselves with knowledge as well as Ethiopian culture and professional ethics.

Her Excellency Hirut Kassaw (PhD), Minister for the Ministry of Culture and Tourism, said that Addis Ababa University should be proud for being great in terms of innovation and grand ideas compared to other higher educational institutions.

Dr. Hirut also said, “In the past, every citizen was proud to be Ethiopian, but today it is not enough just to say you are Ethiopian; you better say you are Ethiopia. By this, you can expand your ideas and an individual can claim to be a country.”

By: Theodros Shewangizaw

Photo: Fikremariam Beyene

Editor: Abraham Girmay