16 October 2017
By Million Belay
Someone asked my son when he was about three years old, ‘What is your father’s job?’ He said, ‘Sibseba’, which in Amharic means ‘meetings’. This was because every time my son used to ask me where I was going, I used to tell him to sibseba. At the time, I was coordinating the Ethiopian civil society preparation for the Rio + 10 Earth Summit held in South Africa in 2002. I laughed at it then, but now, 15 years later, I globe trot from one meeting to another. Some of us are caught up in this cycle and there seems to be no way out of it. Anyway, this year so far, I have participated in nine international meetings. I was active in all of them, either as part of the organising group or as a presenter. One thread connected all of them: ‘transformation.
I feel that a need to fundamentally change in the way we live is at last being widely recognised, except for those people who are stuck, either through their own free will or through the system, and those who benefit from maintaining the status quo. I think that many of