By Yonatan Tesfaye Fessha
How federalism can be utilized to supply acceptance and accommodate ethnic teams is a crucial subject, not just in Africa, yet in multi-ethnic groups around the globe. analyzing how associations of multi-ethnic states were designed to house ethnic range whereas even as keeping nationwide cohesion, this booklet locates institutional responses to the demanding situations of ethnic variety in the context of a federal association. It examines how a federal association has been used to reconcile the conflicting pressures of the call for for the popularity of special identities, at the one hand, and the merchandising of political and territorial integrity, at the different. Comparative case stories of South Africa and Ethiopia because the federal structures offer a contrasting method of problems with ethnic range. Suggesting new ways that federalism may paintings, the writer identifies key associations classes to be able to support to construct an all-inclusive society.
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Additional info for Ethnic Diversity and Federalism: Constitution Making in South Africa and Ethiopia
Every way of life is free to attract adherents, and if some ways of life are unable to maintain or gain the voluntary adherence of people that may be unfortunate, but it is not unfair. On this view, giving political recognition or support to particular cultural practices or associations is unnecessary and unfair. It is unnecessary, because a valuable way of life will have no difficulty attracting adherents. And it is unfair, because it subsidizes some people’s choice at the expense of others. The Limits of the Individual Rights Approach The individual rights approach of liberal democracies to the challenges of ethnic diversity would not have been problematic in a nation-state where the cultural group coincides with the boundaries of the state.
On the other hand, the state can draw boundaries to make ethnic groups majorities in their own house and thus enabling them to exercise control over decisions that affect the survival of their language and culture (Patten 2001; see also Kymlicka 1995: 112). Either way, the decision of the state has an important effect in terms of recognizing or suppressing, as the case may be, the language and culture of a particular ethnic group. The same can be said with regard to the distribution of functions and responsibilities.
Watts argued that ‘[i]n many societies where the political demands for integration and for separatism have been at odds with each other, the adoption of a federal system has seemed a solution to the problem of reconciling these conflicting pressures’ (as quoted in Gagnon 1993: 25). Federalism as Institutional Design to Recognize Ethnic Diversity 29 Fleiner et al. (2003: 206) argue that the appeal of federalism in handling ethnic diversity lies in the fact that it offers a constitutional mechanism that not only tolerates, but also promotes, diversity.