- Halie Selaasie was a emperor of Ethiopia
- The African Union paid tribute to the leader by erecting a statue on SA as a reminder of African unity
- Many criticise Selassie, calling his rule authoritarian
Haile Selassie, the face of elegance and strength, and played a huge role in the liberalisation of Africa
Haile Selassie was Emperor of Ethiopia from 1930 until 1974, but had acted as a regent for more than ten years. Selassie inherited his royal blood from his mother’s lineage. It is claimed that he shares the blood of the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon.
The emperor had somewhat internationalist views which led to Ethiopia joining the United Nations.He advocated for unity between countries in pursuit of shared goal. He believed nations could protect each other rather than compete, Briefly.co.za found.
Rastafari believed Selassie to be the “returned Messiah” who will guide the people to eternal peace.
But his reign did not go uncontested and Selassie was often condemned for being a autocrat.
Human rights groups described his rule as autocratic and during his time, Harari people were forced to leave their lands as they were attacked. Harari is the smallest region in the land. States in Ethiopia are typically inhabited by separate ethnic groups.
Many fought against his policies and attribute Ethiopia's struggle to modernize to the leader.
He was removed from his position after a coup d’etat in 1975 during a severe famine. He died at 83 years old.
The African Union erected a statue of Selassie in South Africa on 10 February. The statue it's said to be as a reminder of the former-emperor's role in African liberation.
The theme of the statue unveiling was “The year of refugees, returnees, and international displaced persons - towards durable solutions to forced displacement in Africa”, announced Cyril Ramaphosa.
The statue serves a much needed reminder to fight for unity in Africa, particularly considering xenophobic ideology in Mzansi.
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