About Ferede Yazezow Aklum
Ferede Yazezow Aklum (1949-2009)
“the history is not only mine but of everyone”
One of the most important figures in the history of the Ethiopian Jewry. Active in the 20th and 21st century, Ferede is the man who penetrated the route for the Alyia operations of the Ethiopian Jews via Sudan and hence leading to the mass Alyia in the 80s and paving the foundations for “operation Moses”
Proving that the impossible can be made possible when all the gates to the Ethiopian Jews were closed, Ferede Aklum became one of the heroes of the Ethiopian Aliya to Israel. Ferede managed to open the route via Sudan, a Muslim state and a member of the Arab League, who at the time had implemented a total embargo in Israel.
The Israeli intelligence services have been quoted as saying” Operation Moses began from a telegram a Jew by the name of Ferede Yazezo Aklum, as a result of his brave activities from within Sudan.”
Ferede was a charismatic, honest person fighting for justice and always with practical ideas and resourcefulness in the field which no doubt helped him combat all the pressures and obstacles which faced him in Sudan. The Images he confronted in Sudan were deeply engraved in his mind and was part of his character to his last days.
In the last few years of his life Ferede was growing flowers for export in Addis Abba, and Ferede was always between Israel and Ethiopia until he passed away at the MENLIK hospital in Addis Abba on January the 7th 2009.
Ferede is survived by his 8 children and 11 brothers.
It was important for Ferede that this Legacy is passed on to the generations to come. In an interview carried out at his home in Addis Ababa, September 2007 he said;
“This is not just my history if you wouldn’t have come if you would have gone to Sudan…. Ferede is a lone wolf, didn’t do anything and won’t have remembered anything, but because you all cooperated and suffered this history has turned into our legacy”.
Milestones in Ferede life:
• Born 15.5.1949 in TIGRAY, Medabay village nearby the historic city Axum
• Brought up and educated in the Jewish village ADI WAREBA near the town INDABAGUNA
• Finish 12 years of education within the education system and was the first Jew to do so)
• Studied two years at the teachers' school MEKELLE
• Studied teaching at the College of Addis
• Was a teacher in TIGRAY and GONDER and Principle at the school in INDABAGUNA
• In the late 70’s founded two schools in the TIGRAY region
• And was the Mayor of the INDABAGUNA Municipality.