Ethiopians celebrates Christmas

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MASERU — The Ethiopian community living in Lesotho got together to celebrate Christmas at the Mediterrannee’ Restaurant in Maseru last Saturday.
On the Ethiopian calendar Christmas falls on 7 January rather than the traditional 25 December.
Christmas is a major holiday in Ethiopia where more than half of the country’s 77 million people are Orthodox Christian.
Ethiopians living in Lesotho marked the celebrations with food and music as a joyous mood permeating the function.
The exiled Ethiopians were dressed to kill in their national dresses.
Ethiopian dishes were on offer and as guests enjoyed their food, they also had an opportunity to listen to Ethiopian music.
It was a joy to see the guests dance in circles, moving heads and shoulders in response to the rhythm in a dance called “eskista”.
Rebecca Hailemichael, an Ethiopian based in Maseru, said the dance was celebratory.
Hailemichael said although she was far away from home, she still felt comfortable to celebrate Christmas in her own way.
“We are dancing and enjoying because it is a celebration day.
It is a great Ethiopian celebration. It is like I am still at home,” she said.
Menbere Taye said the celebration was still similar to those they had back home in Ethiopia.
‘Manthati Mompe, a Mosotho at the Ethiopian Christmas celebration said although she could not understand the language she was happy to dance to the rhythm.
“The rhythm makes me dance,” she said.
Another Mosotho, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the meeting of individuals from different nationalities had given the event a cosmopolitan feel.
“It gives the event a cosmopolitan taste. It is good for the country. It shows that we are one big family. This shows that we have different cultures in the country,” he said.

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