Fiche

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Fiche
Selale
Fiche is located in Ethiopia
Fiche
Fiche
Location within Ethiopia
Coordinates: 9°48′N 38°44′E / 9.800°N 38.733°E / 9.800; 38.733Coordinates: 9°48′N 38°44′E / 9.800°N 38.733°E / 9.800; 38.733
Country Ethiopia
Region Oromia
Zone Semien Shewa
Elevation 2,738 m (8,983 ft)
Population (2007)
 • Total 27,493
Time zone EAT (UTC+3)
Area code(s) 11

Fiche (also spelled Fikke) is a town in central Ethiopia. It is the administrative centre of the Semien Shewa Zone of Oromiya Region and separate woreda. It is located about three km from the main Addis Ababa-Debre Marqos road, Fiche has a latitude and longitude of 9°48′N 38°44′E / 9.800°N 38.733°E / 9.800; 38.733 and an elevation between 2,738 and 2,782 metres above sea level.

Notable landmarks in Fiche include the churches Fiche Giyorgis Bete Kristiyan and Fiche Medhane Alem Bete Kristiyan. The town is also home to several notable Ethiopian painters of religious themes: Alaqa Gebre Selassie Adil (1881-1975), Emealaf Hiruy (1907-1971), and Alefelege Selam (1924- ).

History[edit]

Ras ("Commander") Kassa Haile Darge ruled the former province of Selale from Fiche in the early 20th century.

The deposed Lij Iyasu was imprisoned in Ras Kassa's house until he escaped in 1931. W.E.D. Allen passed through Fiche in 1941, and describes the town as having "the usual character of Abyssinian country towns: an agglomeration of huts standing in rather dreary eucalyptus groves and dominated by a fort and the European villa of the Ras."[1] He also noted that "Fiche has a certain strategic importance in the feudal politics of Abyssinia since it lies across the main line of communication between the capital and Gojjam; and in the period of coup d'etats in the '20s the lord of Salale was always in the position to intervene suddenly in the capital only 70 miles away."[1]

In 1936, after Ras Hailu Tekle Haymanot convinced them to surrender at the beginning of the Italian Occupation, Ras Kassa's two sons Aberra and Asfawossen were executed in Fiche.[2]

By 1958, Fiche was one of 27 places in Ethiopia officially ranked as a First Class Township. The army base of the 1st brigade of the Ethiopian Territorial Army, located at Fiche, was used by the Derg to put conscripts of the People's Militia (reconstituted in the spring of 1977 as the "Red Army") through a twelve-week basic training with modern weapons.[3]

The municipality announced in February 2009 that it had begun various development works totaling 5.6 million birr, which included construction of alleys, ditches, an abattoir, and expansion of water, health and electric power services.[4]

Demographics[edit]

The 2007 national census reported a total population for Fiche of 27,493, of whom 12,933 were men and 14,560 were women. The majority of the inhabitants (94.42%) reported that they practised Ethiopian Orthodox Christianity, and 3.61% were Protestant.[5]

Based on figures from the Central Statistical Agency in 2005, Fiche has an estimated total population of 37,861 of whom 18,446 are men and 19,415 women.[6] The 1994 census reported this town had a total population of 21,187 of whom 10,004 were men and 11,183 were women.

Notes[edit]

  1. ^ a b Allen, "Ethiopian Highlands", Geographical Journal, Vol. 101, No. 1 (Jan., 1943), p. 6
  2. ^ Anthony Mockler, Haile Selassie's War (New York: Oliver Branch, 2003), pp. 169-71. However, Mockler believes that Ras Hailu had been deceived into helping the Italians in these killings, pp. 414f.
  3. ^ "Local History in Ethiopia" (pdf), The Nordic Africa Institute website (last accessed 21 November 2007)
  4. ^ "Town undertaking 5.6 mln birr worth dev’t projects", Ethiopian News Agency website, dated 16 February 2009 (accessed 14 April 2009)
  5. ^ 2007 Population and Housing Census of Ethiopia: Results for Oromiya Region, Vol. 1, Tables 2.1, 2.5, 3.4 (accessed 13 January 2012)
  6. ^ CSA 2005 National Statistics, Table B.3