I n I really see it as necessary to share some background informations and inside knowledge about HIMs efforts on the Land Reform. Babylon uses this topic to blame HIM since Mengistu. So it is I n I duty now to sum up and share some information from Wilhelm Lockot who witnessed that situation in Ethiopia. Let's check it.
The Italo-Ethio War had only a few positiv sides. One of it was that HIM could use this as oppertunity to realise his plans concerning land reform which he had in mind eversince he was Dejatzmatch.
By not fully restoring the land possessions of the big land-owners to their heirs after the liberation HIM kept a considerable amount of land in the possession of the Crown and his family ready to distribute. But land alone does not make a land reform!
In the countryside there were dozens of customary systems who controled the land possessions. The people there lived many different costums, religions and had all their own views of life, but HIMs aim was: to place all Ethiopian citizens on an equal footing. So the land reform would have changed just everything in Ethiopia, a task far beyond the financial resources. But though HIM saw that this was needed to be done, and also the nobles saw it as a necessary step into Ethiopias improved future.
So who could do such a big project? The nobles were willing to cooperate in distributing their land, but were they the right people to do this? HIM wanted to bring Ethiopia away from the old feudalism, and this cannot be made with feudalists. No, for such a new and progressive part in Ethiopias history he needed new and progressive young well educated Ethiopians. Since the war HIM was slowly abolishing the feudal order and replacing them with young foreign educated students, his oncoming elite. But to raise such an elite, change a century old state order, cannot happen over night! Until this new leading class was ready HIM tried to get the nobles in the new created state form, appointed them ministers and so, just to realise that a feudalist remains a feudalist.
Emmediatly after the Coup the time was ready. Some basic features remained: the land was still ready to be distributed and the nobles still cooperated, now even more then ever before, because now their own heirs were progressively foreign educated and future-minded.
So now everything for a land reform was there - the land - and those who make the reform work.
HIM set up in 1960 a committee of land reform which was assisted by foreign advisers. In 1966 that committee had prepared the ground for the new Ministry of Land Reform, which was set up then. Also other ministries, nealry all of them, had now sections working together with the land reform, f.ex. the Ministry of Education which built and ran schools in the newly settled areas.
Now everything ran after the year long preperations of the Emperor, and in this second phase of the Land Reform the Emperor gave the responsibility fully in the hands of the Ethiopians themselves(the ministries)and left them full freedom of action.
It is an interesting inside knowledge, that the destructive criticism of the University against the Emperor becase of the "too slow reform" started in that phase in which HIM ceased to interfere. And that this whole new progressive young foreign educated stuff of all this ministries, and the ministries themselves, were created and selected by the Emperor himself, and that all of them(most of them were still higher education students) were now under the full direction of the University! So the university blamed HIM for "faults" for which they themselves were responsible. This shows that also this was a foreign manipulated propaganda, which I also showed in my articla on "the 1974 Mutiny".
To make a clear summary:
HIM worked from eversince with all his efforts for a land reform to make all his citizens equal. After years long preparing the grounds he set up young progressive stuffed Ministries to make the Land Reform work. As so often, he gave the Ethiopian future in the hands of the Ethiopians themselves.
Now let's see also some words of His Majesty on Land Reform:
"For those of you who possess the land and labour but lack capital, we have made credit available at low interest. For those of you who have the necessary finance but do not possess land to work on, we have, in accordance with our 'Proclamation' which entitles every Ethiopian to ownership of land, established offices in every province through which you may be able to acquire land. Those who have neither land nor money will be granted land and financial loans at low interest. For those of you who possess land, who have financial resources and manpower, we have made experts available to furnish you with the necessary guidance and advice in your various undertakings."
The truth must be spread!