Video: NED Presents Dr. Negasso Gidada

Dr. Negasso Gidada held a presentation on February 24th, 2015 at National Endowment for Democracy in DC entitled “A Constitution for a Multinational Democratic State-Nation: The Case of Ethiopia.” (Getty)


Dr. Negaso Gidada Solan is an esteemed statesman and scholar who has served as president of Ethiopia (1995–2001), member of the House of People’s Representatives (2005–2010), and most recently, as chair of the United for Democracy and Justice Party, one of Ethiopia’s main opposition parties (2012–2013). A life-long proponent of human rights, ethnic inclusion, and democracy, he participated in the student movement of the 1960s, led the Aira School demonstrations against the Wallaga feudal system in the 1970s, and advocated for the rights of the Oromo people, Ethiopia’s largest ethnic group. While living in Germany, Dr. Solan worked to unite the Oromo community, both internally and with other Ethiopian groups, in their struggle against military rule. Returning to his homeland in 1991, he helped to draft a new constitution, chaired the 1994 Constitutional Assembly, and signed the constitution in 1995 as first president of the Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia. During his fellowship, Dr. Solan is writing an article addressing the role of democracy in settling controversies around the Ethiopian ethnic federalist system. His primary focus will be recommendations on how to build a democratic, multi-ethnic state in Ethiopia.


Georgetown University, “The Role of Democracy Building in a Multi-Ethnic State: The Case of Ethiopia,” February 11, 2015.

University of Maryland School of Public Policy, “CISSM Forum/Development Circle | ‘The Role of Democracy in Building a Multi-Ethnic State: The Case of Ethiopia’,” February 19, 2015.

National Endowment for Democracy, “A Constitution for a Multinational Democratic State-Nation: The Case of Ethiopia,” February 24, 2015.

NED Presents Ethiopian Statesman & Scholar Dr. Negasso Gidada

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