On the Gadaa Grades vs. the Gumii Gaayoo Institutions
So far, we have been well introduced to the Executive office (i.e. how a young Oromo goes through stages of career development, called the Gadaa Grades, to finally achieve the Executive power in the Gadaa Grade of the Gadaa 40-year Cycle). Little is known about the Legislative branch of the Gadaa System – which is the Gumii Gaayoo institution.
Understanding the Gumii Gaayoo, i.e. the Legislative supreme National Assembly (in addition to the already well-known Gadaa Executive branch) is key to understanding the democratic nature of the Gadaa System. The Gumii Gaayoo is to the U.S. Congress (or Parliament) as the Gadaa Executive branch (most usually known as the Abbaa Gadaa office) is to the U.S. Office of the President.
Gumii Gaayoo, unlike the U.S. Congress, does not work on “the majority rules and minority rights” principle; instead, Gumii Gaayoo works on the concept of consensus – there’s no majority or minority, but agreement by all. No one goes home losing in the Gumii Gaayoo system – compromises and debates continue until everyone is a winner (i.e. rule by consensus).
Gadaa.com will present more on Gumii Gaayoo, in a series called “Gumii Gaayoo 101,” to introduce the Oromo Legislative system to its readers in the next days. For today, here’s a pictorial representation of the Gadaa Grades.
Keep in mind that one’s biological age and Gadaa age may not overlap since a boy/man enters the Gadaa cycle exactly 40 years behind when his father enters the Gadaa Grade. Watch the video on the side for more description. The pictures below are for those whose biological ages overlap with their Gadaa ages.
(Source of Pictures: ArdaJila.com)
Dabballee (0-8 years of age)
Gadamojjii (above 72)