Happy 123 Adwa Great African Victory Day: Time to Erect the Aste Menelik Statue in Africa Now!

NES Commentary 45



“In The History of Mankind, there has never been any other black man like Menelik, who had triggered a lasting fear and doubt in the mind of Europeans” Augustus Wylde

“Menelik, the Great, inspired generations yet unborn with his daring defeat of the Italian Army at the battle of Adwa. He tried diplomacy and experienced cunning; he showed character and got in return snobbery and lies; and when he saw the signs of war, he rallied Ethiopian forces to defeat the enemy on African soil. This became one of the most important lessons in African history.”

Molefi Kete Asante, author of The History of Africa

 “In 1896 it was evident that the Europeans, even those who said they were the friends of Ethiopia, would come together and betray Menelik after the Treaty of Wuchale. Africans were encouraged by the ultimate victory of Menelik’s genius and the courage of his soldiers on the battlefield. Let our youth never forget the many heroes of our victories; let our nations raise monuments to them in every city to teach lessons of resistance, selflessness, and Pan African Unity!” Molefi Kete Asante, author of The History of Africa

“If in Brazil the newspaper ‘Oh Menelik’ after the Great Adwa Victory was created, why not we fail to erect a statue in Southern Africa where Ethiopianism has inspired the liberation imagination of all Africans with the second Ethiopia Manifesto declared after Adwa Victory in 1896 in Southern Africa.”   Molefi K Asante and Mammo Muchie

“If the American president John F Kennedy, the French president Jacques Chirac and Mummar Gaddafi all recognize Aste Menelik as the greatest African leader for ably  leading and winning the Adwa  victory to make Africa free, why are some in current Ethiopia   use ethnic virus  and fail to recognize this great African leader?”  Mammo Muchie

Ethiopia has a unique distinction in the universe for empowering those that were disempowered, for humanising those that were dehumanised, spiritualising those that were denied their right to worship God and inspiring and strengthening those oppressed to resist oppression” —Mammo Muchie


Today is the 123 Adwa Great African Victory Day. We are celebrating the Great Adwa African Victory in Johannesburg in South Africa on March 2, 2019.  The leadership of Aste Menelik is recognised and acknowledged globally. For some reason in Ethiopia, there is still a perception of Aste Menelik with ethnic curses and lenses. Ethiopians must acknowledge whatever mistakes Atse Menelik may have made, he is the greatest leader Africa ever had. It is time all Africans who genuinely recognise through the leadership Aste Menelik provided that Africa discovered the globally recognised wonder of African solutions to the problems imposed on Africa by colonialism. It is after the great Victory of Adwa the Second Ethiopia Manifesto was launched globally. Ethiopia earned the name to be the home for all non-European peoples. It became the spiritual homeland of all the oppressed people not only for Africa but also for the whole world.

The Journey is Still Not Over to End Colonialism

Today, more than ever, Africans need to look back in order to go forward.  But what do Africans see when they look back? They often are overwhelmed by seeing mainly the destructive over 500 years of the de-humanising African experience. They rarely acknowledge, appreciate, recognise and promote the numerous struggles for liberation that took place from the period of slavery to the present time in all parts of the Africana world.

It is urgent that the constructive and positive heritage of liberation struggles from every part of Africa have to be excavated, recorded, studied and  resurrected  in order to re -educate and wean generations of Africans to know that Africans have continued to sacrifice throughout the  over 500 years of destruction, thingification, colonisation and   subjection to varied forms of oppression.

  1. b) The negative destructive period must be taught with a full appreciation of the positive data of the African liberation and resistance historical heritage so that the legacy of colonialism, imperialism, apartheid, neo-colonialism and all varieties of oppression no longer affect Africans from the way they think, to the way they learn, work and look. Time to re-visit and remember all the liberation struggles to become Africans with unity and renaissance expressing full pride, dignity, self-reliance, self-confidence, freedom and independence.
  2. c) The African futures are built with the imagination and knowledge of the liberation struggle history and heritage by learning and overcoming the remaining risks and dangers from the legacy of the destructive period. The future is made by appreciating and learning from the liberation struggles how Africans tried their best to come together when attacks were directed at them.
  3. d) The liberation struggles were in various ways influenced by the shared ideas of Ethiopianism, Pan-Africanism and the African Renaissance. These ideas were not just created. They are the outcomes of the heritage and history of Africa’s numerous liberation struggles. Africa’s unity is still waiting to be made. Ethiopianism, Pan-Africanism and the African Renaissance will provide the foundational ideas and visions for re-thinking, re-designing and re-engineering the African united futures.


Why The Great Adwa African Victory is a True Radiator of the Sunshine of Liberation

The Adwa Victory that took place on March 2, 1896 was of the most significant African liberation struggles that took place during the time of the European Scramble for Africa. The Adwa Victory reinforced Ethiopianism and Ethiopianism reinforced pan-Africanism, and both Ethiopianism and Pan-Africanism reinforced the Africa Renaissance. They are one in three, and three into one. The successful resistance of the 1896 Adwa Victory symbolizes the best highway of African liberation. Any other way is not the African freeway. Africans must value and cherish their history. The Adwa Victory has to live on until Africa is fully free and united. The lessons from Adwa Victory make us all never to give up resisting all varieties of injustice Africans are still not free from. The African spirit of liberation will continue to shine ever brighter by remembering all the liberation struggles that the great African Adwa Victory represents.

The victory dented irreversibly the claim that the European colonial project was invincible. The victory was so decisive it brought into big question the project to Europeanise, just like America, Canada and Australia, the whole of Africa. Remarkably Africans from South Africa and other parts wanted to join the battle making the Adwa Victory a distinctive African battle over World Empire.

.Adwa was a major anti-colonialist battle fought by all Ethiopians, under the skilful leadership of Emperor Menelik and Empress Taitu. This victory resonated well beyond the Ethiopian and indeed the African border. It represented the clash between colonialism and liberation on a world-scale.  Emperor Menelik made the call: “Those who have strength, support us with your strength those who are weak, support us with your prayers” Empress Taitu added: “I am a woman. I do not like war. But I would rather die than accepting your deal.”

It is a matter of historical record that the Adwa victory signalled the beginning of the end of the Scramble for Africa. This victory constitutes a crucial chapter in the record of African resistance and liberation. It armed generations of Africans with the confidence of victory to engage in resistance and liberation. It attracted attention as far as the Caribbean and the Americas, not to mention South Africa, where those involved in the Ethiopianism movement decided to join directly the battle of Adwa in 1896.  In South Africa we celebrated the 120 years of the Great Adwa Africa Victory with former President and current chancellor of UNISA gave a powerful and knowledge rich highly inspiring keynote address. When we celebrated the 120 years of the Great Adwa African victory, we combined it with the 6th Africa Unity for Renaissance Conference to open the opportunity to connect all the liberation struggles with the current call to fulfil African unity and Renaissance today. We opened with a number of partners that included the DST, NRF AISA, TMALI, UJ and TUT and others to go from talking to doing African unity and renaissance in 2010.  In 2016 Both Adwa’s African victory and the African unity for Renaissance has been run with TMALI providing the secretariat. The Patron our brother former President Thabo Mbeki gave the most inspiring and so well researched the keynote address combining the 120 years of Africa’s Adwa Victory with his powerful vision combining Ethiopianism with Pan-Africanism and the African renaissance.

The Adwa Victory forms as a key pillar reinforcing the Pan-African Congresses, and the first African liberation movement the ANC in Azania. Adwa Victory provided probably one of the best, if not the very best of all the most significant practical examples of the African resistance history during the Scramble for Africa. Hence it becomes one of the pivotal helices for Ethiopianism, Pan-Africanism and  the African Renaissance  Adwa Victory in 1896 reinforces the World Union of Ethiopians (Africans), formed as the African Association in 1897 from outside Africa. The pan-African congress was founded by Sylvester Williams in 1900 that was in direct contact with Emperor Menelik at the time. Cuban-Americans, Haitians and African Diaspora from Brazil all were inspired by the Adwa Victory of 1896. Haiti’s 100 years of independence was celebrated in Ethiopia in Addis Ababa. The formation of the African National Congress (ANC) as the first African Liberation Movement with spiritualism and Ethiopianism was acknowledged by former president Mandela as follows:

“Fundamental tenets of the Ethiopian Movement were self-worth, self-reliance and freedom. These tenets drew the advocates of Ethiopianism, like a magnet, to the growing political movement. That political movement was to culminate in the formation of the ANC in 1912. It is in this sense that the ANC, we, trace the seeds of the formation of our organization to the Ethiopian Movement of the 1890s” (Nelson Mandela, Speech to the Free Ethiopian Church of South Africa).African -American churchmen who went to South Africa in the 1890s arrived at a time when some African Christians were setting up churches of their own. This independent-church movement was called “Ethiopianism”

Ethiopianism became a generic term to describe a whole range of the black man’s efforts to improve his religious, educational and political status in society. It became the concept that constituted pan-Africanism from the 18th, 19th to the 20th century until World War I in 1914.The Adwa victory provided practical expression to Ethiopianism: self-worth, dignity, unity, confidence, self-reliance, race pride, spirituality and freedom from colonialism.

Lessons from the Adwa African victory over World Empire are relevant to strengthen Pan-Africanism and the African Renaissance for our time and the future. The Africa Union, all the current African states, the entire African Diaspora and even all those nations across the world that have been colonised are welcome to participate and contribute and spread vast education and awareness to reach every African child, woman and man across the world.

Concluding Remark: A Handbook on the Great Adwa African Victory Is A Must Read for ALL

We need to produce a handbook on the Great African Adwa Victory and publish it to launch on the 125th of the Great African Adwa Victory Day on March 2, 2021.

We suggest there should be the following areas included in the handbook.


  1. The Significance of the Adwa Victory for Expediting African Unity Today
  2. The Lessons of the Adwa Africa Victory against the Scramble for Africa
  3. The Relationship of Adwa Victory with Ethiopianism,Pan-Africanism and the African Renaissance
  4. Adwa’s African Victory with ANC, and the Pan-African Congresses
  5. The Relevance of the lessons from the great Adwa Victory to Diffuse Pan-African education
  6. The Relationship of Liberation Struggles inside and outside Africa
  7. The Contribution of the African Diaspora   to the Adwa African victory
  8. Adwa Victory make Africa a victor not a victim
  9. Adwa Victory the Best Example for providing African solutions to African problems Evaluating critically political and economic de-coloinsation
  10. Using Adwa Great African Victory as a Model for Anchoring Pan-Africanism and African Renaissance to close the colonial chapter finally.

Wishing you all to spend the happy Adwa Great African day memorably and educationally to make Africans own rich Africa and make every African to live   by enjoying additive and multiplicative capable life free from the subtraction of life with poverty, inequality and ballooning unemployment.

Prof. Mammo Muchie, DPhil

DST/NRF SARChI Research Professor on Science, Technology, Innovation and Development :Tshwane University of Technology , Adjunct Professor in BDU & Harmaya, Ethiopia , and Riara University in Kenya, and Associate Faculty Professor, Sussex University, U.K.

e-mail: muchiem@tut.ac.za, mammo.muchie@gmail.com,

Website: www.tut.a.c.za  www.tmd-oxford.org/content/mammo-muchie

www.tandfonline.com/rajs and www.ajstid.com

www.nesglobal.org and http://nesglobal.org/eejrif4/index.php?journal=admin



  1. Hello Dear Countrymen!!!!

    You know me by now that I have nothing but love for you. I am here to let you hear from me something that is very special for me both as your dear countryman but also as a man of color. That story and the day I am sharing with you is that glorious day etched in stone never to be concealed or left forgotten. It is that day that sends megawatt volts of pride all over my high mileage body every time I think or read about it. It is that glorious day, that day my and your grandparents marched into the hills, ravines and fields of Adwa knowing that it would be their last day on this good earth. They did that because no one had to tell them that it was their Allah given rights to defend their Allah bestowed domiciles from murderous bigots. No one had to tell them that heavily armed ‘KKK thugs’ were there to shoot and hang every ‘[ deleted ]’ in sight. They were in complete understanding that the enemy they were facing at that place on that day behooves them to be calculating and also well prepared. They understood very well that a vast network of intelligence must be in place to play that heathen on their doorstep. And they played him very, very well. It was written that the mad as hell patriotic chief from Tigrai was sending ‘secret’ messages to Baratieri his intention to defect to his side and he was waiting for the Italian chief to fire the first shot. It was also written about the ‘secret’ messages the emperor’s cousin Mekonen along with chiefs Haimanot and Mika-il(Ali) were urging him to come and kill their common enemy, the emperor. It was written that they were ‘telling’ Baratieri that the emperor army is getting thinner and fewer by the day that he was thinking about cutting and run for his life. They pondered!!! They lured!!! They lured and lured the monster from Rome until he was well inside their compound. When their single and double envelopment war plan is firmly on the ground they lured him again to fire the first shot. Dabormida might have sent a message to his wife that the very next day he would shoot a photo of him surrounded and being served by 3,000 ‘[ deleted ]’. What he did not know was the fact my Barentu ‘grand uncle’ and his Amhara, Tigrai and many other ethnic groups were watching his every move and primed to show him and his partners-in-crime how lethal an Ethiopian could be when his pride is touched by outsiders and ready to teach him a lesson or two how to conduct a conventional warfare Alula style, Mekonnen style, Taytu style, Haimanot style, Mika-il(Ali) syle, Balcha style, Dinegde style leaving him no counteroffensive option! None! None except for Baratieri to cut and run like a scared witless rabbit or rather like a high noon bank robber chased by blood smelling vigilante mob!!!! But for my [ deleted ] information or rather misinformation was part of the game. You think that misinformation was started by KGB and CIA during the cold war. No!!! It was my and your grandparent who perfected and used from the bottom of the deck to their advantage. They painted themselves as if they were deserted, far and few when their rank was swelling by the day!!! They presented themselves as people who love to run naked or have naked and did not have any clue what warfare is or how it was supposed to be conducted as an organized army. They even sent him fattened cattle, honey and milk to make him think they were still like his Neanderthals ancestors who were incapable of distinguishing friends from enemies. By now the Baratieri’s ego was so built up and emboldened by the news of potential desertion at the outset of war ordered the commencement of the battle. But his worst nightmare was awaiting him. His worst nightmare, a [ deleted ] with a Hotchkiss gun on his lap was all around him even before finishing his recital to the Roman gods. He could hear that thunderous scream of that fire spitting woman named Taytu admonishing those soldiers of the fainted hearts who tried to withdraw prematurely from the battle fronts!!!! He could hear her telling them that she did not bring enough skirt for them to wear!!!! And he could hear them telling that roaring Taytu like ‘Don’t talk to me like that, woman! I am going back!’ Baratieri saw those incensed men turning into killing machines, their fainted hearts gone in a flash!!! Now the earth and sky were laminated all around him with little leeway for folding back or escape. Now my Barentu grand cousin and his comrades in arms started playing the complicated mancala game in the middle of the battle. On one of their moves their led the arrogant Dabormida and his entire battalion plus army right into the welcoming arms of my Barentu grand cousins. When the carnage was over Dabormida was dying squealing like untidy pig. Now arch angels Jibril and Mika-il were in the mix. They were in the mix because that land of Maryam Magdalene and Bilal ibn Rabah was being desecrated by ruffians. They were in the mix because that land and its people were put together there by Allah at the begging of times no matter the numerous and unabating travesties they had to go through. It is because it was the land where the two major religions, Christianity and Islam, had taken foothold there without the need of an all out battle. The battle Baratieri started on that day did not even last the entire length of the daylight. For intents and purposes it was over by the mid day. 12 noon high, it was over. Now Baratieri turned around and ran like a scared deer from the Chercher Mountains!!! One of my grand cousins along with his Tigrayan and Amhara friends were in hot pursuit after him. But his horse was still fresh and not like their battle fatigued ones. But they stood on top of one the hills and told him who he really was. Oh Boy!!!! They were telling him using all kinds of words in their profane dictionary. No, I am not telling you what they yelled at him. No, no this is a family show. But I can tell you one so mildly. All three of them thundered at him like ‘You, the son of a thousand biscuits!!!!’ It seems he heard it all slammed into his bigoted ears carried by the drifting wind. How do I know that? You may ask. That is because I was teleported to that day!!!! I saw that thunderous lady Taytu telling off the retreating soldiers!!! You should all read more about her. Now some of you misogynistic pigs may doubt her role just because she was a woman. Well you have one now by the name Aisha bint Muhammed Mussa, right? You now have another one with more than 250,000 men of the armed forces under her command. Try her!!! Just try to encroach an inch into her 425,000 square miles of territory!! Just try her!!!! Just try, you chicken!!!! Now to your misery I will leave with one of eternal quotation uttered by Taytu. It was quoted by one of the foreign dignitaries who she reigned over him while trying to tell her what she already knew very, very well. She goes like this: ‘We are ancient, we are small but to become great we do not need outsiders as councilors. If we need such councilors we will choose them from among our own people’. That just slew me, man!!! I got ravaging goose bumps all over my body just typing it down for you now.

    Now I have heard some of you saying the outcome of the battle at Adwa had more harm than benefits for the fact that it ended up dividing the same people into two leaving one to be enslaved by outside forces. I also told you that that was the dumbest utterances I ever heard from men of color. I have my reasons for that right from the annals of modern history of that region. The same people you mentioned have already been divided in two spheres years and possibly more than hundred years before 1896. Due to the heavy handedness of the northern chiefs people to the proximity of the known sea had to seek protection from forces that were capable of giving them reprieve from gross unfair practices. They gave up a region that was well made for any kind of liberation war if they wanted to. That victory at Adwa should have been used as inspiration to wage a liberation war. Their brothers to the south could have been more than willing to provide them with unlimited assistance if they chose to. Instead the Antonelis, the Giorgios and Angelos were given the leeway to enjoy the droit du seigneur(jus primae noctis) outlawed in their homelands (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Droit_du_ … olenov.jpg
    So take it somewhere and don’t try to tell this beyond-repair Afro-centric countryman. Also I have told you that the war plan and victory at Adwa had given inspirations for future wars including the one fought between Japan and Russia 9 years later in 1905. I will leave you with the following as it was perfectly depicted in a cartoon by Parisian Figaro in 1905 about that victory by Japan which as far as I am concerned it should belong to my and your grandparents’ victory at Adwa. Enjoy: https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/Cate … bambus.jpg


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here