“Beautiful” African men: Emperor Haille Selassie


As human beings, we have the tendency of judging other people too harshly.  I remember when I was growing up, in my house,, my mother had a wall painting with the inscription ”When I do good, nobody remembers but when I do bad no one forgets.”

I believe that might be the case with this man.

Emperor Haille Selassie

In his last days, in which he was known as ‘His Imperial Majesty the Conquering Lion of the Tribe of Judah, Haile Selassie I, Elect of God, Emperor of Ethiopia’, he ruled his kingdom as a medieval autocrat and so he left behind the reputation of a tyrant. This reputation seems to have overshadowed his contributions to Africa and so many people forget or simply do not know the role he played in building African Unity and fostering the development of the Organisation of African Unity, now the African Union.

 Here are a few remarkable things that this man did, that I want the world to know about:

  • He abolished slavery- which is why to date Ethiopia is one of the countries with a population of different skin tones but the least record of racism among the different colours

  •  He defended his country against Ethiopian occupation under Mussolini and today Ethiopia remains the only country in Africa whose history does not record a period of colonial rule

  • His address to the League of Nations in June 1936 after Italy attacked Ethiopia became the first challenge to the principle of the “Equality of Nations” in the United nations and today we all are bitter about the UN having some nations which are more equal than others.

  • He initiated the very first meeting of the Organization of African Unity in 1963

  • He united the two factions of African Unity that had emerged in the form of the Casablanca group calling for immediate unity of Africa(Ghana, Guinea, Mali , Egypt, the Transitional Government of Algeria, and Morocco) and the Monrovia  group calling for gradual unity (Nigeria, Liberia, Senegal, Ivory Coast, Cameroon, Togo and others)

  • He led the process of devising the charter for the 38- nation bloc no wonder the AU headquarters are in Addis Ababa.

  • He pushed for the setting up of the United Nations Economic Commission for Africa and  no wonder its headquarters are in Addis Ababa

  • He advocated civil disobedience when it was necessary to remedy fundamental social injustice or restore freedom to the oppressed

  • He was the first elected President of the OAU

Here are a few wise words that came out of the wise mind of this wise man.

“Throughout history, it has been the inaction of those who could have acted; the indifference of those who should have known better; the silence of the voice of justice when it mattered most; that has made it possible for evil to triumph.”

“Until the philosophy which holds one race superior and another inferior is finally and permanently discredited and abandoned, everywhere is war and until there are no longer first-class and second-class citizens of any nation, until the color of a man’s skin is of no more significance than the color of his eyes. And until the basic human rights are equally guaranteed to all without regard to race, there is war. And until that day, the dream of lasting peace, world citizenship, rule of international morality, will remain but a fleeting illusion to be pursued, but never attained… now everywhere is war.”

“To win the War, to overcome the enemy upon the fields cannot alone ensure the Victory in Peace. The cause of War must be removed. Each Nation’s rights must be secure from violation. Above all, from the human mind must be erased all thoughts of War as a solution. Then and then only will War cease.”

“Leadership does not mean domination. The world is always well supplied with people who wish to rule and dominate others.”

“The true leader is a different sort; he seeks effective activity which has a truly beneficent purpose. He inspires others to follow in his wake, and holding aloft the torch of wisdom, leads the way for society to realize its genuinely great aspirations”

“What we seek is a new and a different way of life. We search for a way of life in which all men will be treated as responsible human beings, able to participate fully in the political affairs of their government; a way of life in which ignorance and poverty, if not abolished, are at least the exception and are actively combated; a way of life in which the blessings and benefits of the modern world can be enjoyed by all without the total sacrifice of all that was good”

I am one of the people who is perplexed by the absence of the Emperor at the AU headquarters and as much as I admire the contributions that Kwame Nkrumah made to the formation of the AU, I do believe this man right here deserves equal honour.

I have often wondered where he got his good looks, and why Ethiopians are so beautiful but now that I know they are the descendants of the union between the Queen of Sheba and King Solomon, I know why!

About madubesbrainpot

A fighter for basic freedoms and fundamental human rights View all posts by madubesbrainpot

5 responses to ““Beautiful” African men: Emperor Haille Selassie

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