July 19, 2024

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Fano commander Wubante Abate

Fano commander Wubante Abate

How will Death of Commander Wubante Abate Influence Fano?

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Wubante Abate, a senior Fano commander was killed fighting government forces in Amhara region of Ethiopia yesterday. South Gondar Fano has confirmed the death of the Fano commander. Read more..

In the Amhara, Fano groups have been carrying out attacks on security forces, Prosperity Party members and government officials since last year. Ethiopian military, regional police and militia are conducting ground operation supported by airstrikes to crush Fano groups. Fano groups claim that they are fighting to protect the rights of Amhara people who are allegedly under repression.

Wubante Abate is the first major Fano commander who has been killed in the Amhara region since the start of military operation last year. The man died in Hamusit which is situated in South Gondar. Wubante was leading South Gondar Fano and he died in South Gondar. He served in Ethiopian National Defense Force as a Major and later settled in his home town in South Gondar. During Tigray war, he fought alongside Ethiopian military against Tigray forces. But later when military decided to disband Fano groups, he and other Fano commanders refused to be disarmed and took up arms against security forces.

While Fano supporters and heartbroken at the death of the Fano commander, the likely impact of his death on overall Fano’s struggle is unclear. Fano groups are working independently. In Shewa, Gojjam, Gondar and Wollo, dozens of Fano brigades and units are working separately. These groups have no central structure. So the impact of Wubante Abate’s death will remain limited to South Gondar only.

But Wubante united South Gondar Fano groups in a very short period of time and south Gondar Fano was working in close co ordination with Gojjam Fano. Last month, the two groups jointly stormed Bahir Dar, Amhara regional capital. New commander is likely to be appointed in South Gondar. Will the new South Gondar Fano commander be able to keep Fano unity intact?

Since Wubante Abate died fighting, he will serve as a hero and role model for Fano’s resistance movement. Fano groups cherish Asaminew Tsige, former Amhara regional security chief, who was killed in 2019. Asaminew Tsige founded and strengthened Fano groups. It seems Fano resistance movement has found another hero in the form of Wubante Abate.