JAWAR IN TROUBLE Orthodox Youth Union has given Jawar his last warning Fifth and as a result, while a Constitution constitutes a united political community of empowered citizens, Ethiopia’s successive Hige Mengists have failed with this regard. This is evidenced by the raging controversy regarding basic issues such as Ethiopian national identity, the bundle of rights signifying citizenship and other related matters.
Sixth and lastly, a Constitution signals the forging of a compromise between the competing visions and preferences of rival elite groups. On the other hand, the Hige Mengist is tailor made to reflect the aspirations, visions and preferences of whoever was in power at the time of its enactment. A Constitution is a compact binding together the empowered citizens of a democratic state. All of Ethiopia’s successive Hige Mengists, however, were promulgated and enforced largely as the assertion of power by whoever was at the helm.
The reasons enumerated above, I have believe, set apart Hige Mengist and Constitution. The two instruments are distinct in both how they originate and they have differing effects on the concerned society. Consequently, my overall conclusion is that Hige Mengist is not a Constitution.
Having all of the above, one fact must be emphatically underscored: Ethiopia’s Hige Mengists were not static documents but displayed an evolutionary trend over time in order to account for the local and global pressures prevailing at the time of their promulgation. The granting of the initial Hige Mengist in 1931 was such a novel idea that even members of the ruling aristocracy remained largely uninvolved other than perhaps carefully expressing their misgivings.