by Kadafo Mohammed Hanfare
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The entire region had been run by Yemeni Imams for nearly 2 centuries. Of this foreign dynasty that governed the Afar populace, only three are remembered currently; Imam Ali, Imam Omar, and Imam Salman. The latter was the most famous of them all.
Imam Salman was seen by many as the cruelest and most tyrannical ruler to have governed the Afar people. He was known to punish opposition by death and then force the family and friends of the deceased to congratulate him for executing his judgement.
His villainy and cruelty knew no bounds. Eventually, he found his match in a young Afar man, Kadafo. Kadafo's path first came into crossings with the Imam when the latter had ordered his soldiers to bring to his palace a rare plant known as Kursa. Kursa grows in such remote lands, that the bushels would have died by the time they were retrieved and brought to Imam Salman. Fearing failing Imam Salman, the soldiers sought the help of Kadafo. He taught the soldiers in the ways of transporting this plant. Pleased with this accomplishment, the soldiers marched into Imam Salman's court with the plant. Little did they know, Imam Salman was expecting them to fail and was very upset at their success. The soldiers confessed that Kadafo was to blame for what transpired and were promptly on their way to deliver the latter to the mad ruler. Foreseeing their arrival, Kadafo had ingested a red liquid known as Ayroor to make it seem as if he had been vomiting blood. The soldiers took pity on him and reported Kadafo's fictitious illness to Imam Salman. It was then that Imam Salman understood Kadafo would be a problem.
Kadafo had allied himself with people in the Lao area along with his own supporters in an effort to overthrow the Imam. Kadafo's ace in the hole was his agreement with the Imam's personal maid. Not only did he agree to give her a larger role in administering the post Imamate Afar government, Kadafo also promised to marry her. The plan had been set in motion; Kadafo would travel to Awsa as a trojan horse and convince the Imam of his illness and his wish to spend his dying days with his family and friends in the capital. In the dead of the night, the maid set the palace ablaze and Kadafo urged the people to throw liquidized butter on the fire instead of water in an effort for an expedited rescue. The Imam, along with his entire family, were burnt alive that night evening any existing remnant of the Yemeni Imamate. Kadafo then took over as de-facto leader of the Afar people establishing the dynasty of his family, The Aydahiso's, and the Awsa Sultanate that has lasted 280 years. The fate of the accomplice maid is unknown.
Kadafo was the first indigene to rule the Afar people and so public approval of him was sky high. His conquests, while legendary, were brief as he eventually died and was succeeded by his son, Mohammed. It was during Mohammed's rule that the Egyptians attempted an invasion of Ethiopia. They were overwhelmed by the Afar defenders and were defeated. The line of succession then fell to Aydahis, and after him, Hanfare. Hanfare was the first Sultan to unite all different Afar factions under his rule. Hanfare's son, Mohammed, then took the reigns of the Sultanate.
Mohammed Hanfare, known as Ellalta, is arguably the most popular of Afar Sultans. He was given the title of Ellalta, meaning the ever flowing river, by his people due to his benevolence and kindness. It was during Ellalta's rule that the Egyptian's returned to conquer Ethiopian territory as Werner Munzinger, a swiss explorer, as one of their Generals. Once again, the would be invaders were held off by the Afar warriors and Munzinger met his end at the hands of Ellalta himself. Ellalta was a great Sultan, yet was not able to leave his personal life outside of his role as the Sultan. He had several wives of whom two are most notable; Hasnah Fatuma and Kadda Rokya. These two women bore many chilrdren for Ellalta. Ellalta was more fond of Kadda Rokya. His level of affection for her was so that his will to be succeeded by his eldest son, as his father and grandfather had done before him, was persuadable by her. She was not willing for her Husband's other wife's son, Aydahis, to inherit the throne. Aydahis was the rightful heir and the eldest, his only mistake was being born to the wrong mother. In order to avoid conflict between siblings, Ellalta appointed his nephew,Mohammed Aydahis, against the advice of his Council, the Makaban thus starting a chain reaction that has continued to damage the Sultanate to this day.