The 1974 Ethiopian Revolution and the Confederation of Ethiopian Labour Unions (CELU)

Adane Kassie


Workers were one of the most important actors during the 1974 Ethiopian revolution. The Confederation of Ethiopian Labour Unions (here after CELU), which represented the country’s organized workers, had already begun to resist employers and state authorities before the revolution broke out. The revolution was therefore used by the CELU as a welcome opportunity to petition the state and make its demands heard. This paper therefore attempts to reconstruct the impact of the 1974 Ethiopian revolution on the labour relations in general and the CELU in particular. Since this is a qualitative study, data for the study was collected through document analysis and in-depth interviews. The collected data were analyzed thematically. The findings show that the military and the civilian left groups used CELU as a battle ground during the revolution. In addition, the military dismantled and reorganized the CELU in line with the new socialist model.

Keywords: Revolution, Collective bargaining, Labour, Strike, Lock out

DOI: 10.7176/IAGS/98-02

Publication date: January 31st 2023

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ISSN (Paper)2224-574X ISSN (Online)2224-8951

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