Le Fichee-Chambalaalla, festival du Nouvel an des Sidamas

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© Authority for Research and Conservation of Cultural Heritage (ARCCH), 2014

Le Fichee-Chambalaalla est une fête du Nouvel An célébrée par les Sidamas. D’après la tradition orale, le Fichee commémore l’histoire d’une femme sidama qui, après son mariage, rendait visite à sa famille et ses proches une fois par an. Elle apportait à ces occasions du buurisame, un repas concocté à partir de fausses bananes, de beurre et de lait, et qui était partagé avec les voisins. Le Fichee est depuis devenu un symbole fédérateur des Sidamas. Chaque année, des astrologues déterminent la date exacte du festival, qui est ensuite annoncée aux clans. Des manifestations collectives ont lieu tout au long du festival, y compris des chants et des danses traditionnels. Chaque membre y participe, quels que soient son âge, son sexe et son statut social. Le premier jour, les enfants passent de maison en maison pour saluer leurs voisins, qui en retour leur offrent du buurisame. Pendant le festival, les chefs de clans conseillent aux Sidamas de travailler dur, de respecter et d’aider les anciens, de s’abstenir de couper les arbres indigènes et d’éviter la mendicité, l’indolence, les faux témoignages et le vol. Le festival favorise donc l’équité, la bonne gouvernance, la cohésion sociale, la coexistence pacifique et l’intégration entre les clans sidamas et les divers groupes ethniques en Éthiopie. Les parents transmettent la tradition à leurs enfants oralement et à travers la participation à des événements lors des célébrations. Les femmes transmettent en particulier les connaissances et savoir-faire associés aux coiffures et à la préparation du buurisame à leurs filles et aux autres filles dans leurs villages respectifs.

After the actual date for the Fichee celebration is reckoned and identified by ayyanto, clan leaders and competent elder (chimeesa) attend a meeting called songo summoned to make decision on the proclamation of the date to the people.
Making peace with other party with whom one has had disagrements before Fichee holiday by resolving any sort of conflicts they had with their relatives or neighbours, a culture of personal purification and promotion to a new year.
Announcing the date on which the Fichee holiday falls to the wider community by hanging skin of sheep on stick, known as lalawa, by clan leaders in their respective areas at gudumaale where large number of people gather for marketing purposes.
Undertaking thorough observation of the moora, white fattish layer of small intestine of the slaughteered goat.The specialists with the skill of reading moora announce the result to the public whether the year to come is 'blessed and promising' or not
Passing through a door like shape or arc made using wet bamboo tree in gudumaale, symbolizing the entrance to a new year, renouncing all the bad things of the old year and accepting the new one with good wishes.
In the evening of the Fichee holiday, a cultural dish, known as buursame, is served on a clay pot, known as shafeta, and feasted on communally. The feast kicks off in a house of a man who has higher social status
The event of feeding the cattle a salty soil, known as bole, by scattering it in a grazing area or kalo which is a reserved pasture for the animals by heads of households on the day of Chambalaalla (New Year).
Hore is a traditional singing performed by unmarried girls in which they beautify themselves and go to play with their peers and praise one another, and finally join the boys they want to play with and sing and dance faaro
Faaro is a traditional singing and dancing performed by unmarried boys and girls interested in each other, facing in rows in opposite direction, moving back and forth and bending down their neck during Fichee festival at Gudumaale, public gathering places
Ketala is a traditional singing and dancing performed by adult male community members, wearing a traditional cloth, known as gonfa, with red, white and black strip colors and buluko (home-spun cotton cloth) and holding spear and shield.
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