Fichee Chambalal new- year celebration is one of the interesting holidays typical to Sidama. It is celebrated for two weeks in a colorful scenarios that leaves everlasting impression in our mind. According to Sidama’s traditional calendar, the New Year’s Day is determined by a through astronomical process by observing the moon and stars’ position.
The" mootes" would discuss with chemssa (that is elderlies) in mootesongo (that is a gathering chaired by the "moote")then after, it would be announced on market days in every area to celebrat., Elders in every area would start fasting for fifteen days, and on their fasting break day, sofoteQetela (blessing and traditional dance would be performed). The celebration process starts from the elders blessing and dancing cultural dance. Next to sofoteQetela, adults & youths carryout traditional dance known as AdihaQetela (true Qetela) on all market days until fiche.
The next day of fiche is called chambalal .On this day the family -head would wear traditional clothes & pass the whole day by feeding in excess and looking after their cattle. In the meantime children come together and move turn by turn in each house saying "AydeChamblala" locally it means "Happy New Year" .Here, the family- head feed them the local favorite food ,Bursame and butter the children on their heads . On the day after chembelala, there is a colorful show at Gudumale where a crowd of people celebrate with chanting, dancing & bless together. On that evening day of Fiche ,each family- head makes an arch- like shape from fresh woods locally called Hulluqa in front of his house to pass through it .
And his family and cattle also pass-through it as well to mark the transition to the New Year. During the evening, in every area people start to visit elderly peoples house . During the night, the process of having meals communally from house to house takes place. On that day the meal that would be eaten communally is called Bursame. It is Qocho socked meal with butter and its compliment is milk. Meat is never eaten on fiche days; and even meat is not stored in the house. The Sidama's New Year (Ficheechambalal )celebration is registered by UNESECO as an intangible heritage in a Representative List in December 2015G.C. Here pictures that express part of the ceremony are attached below.