The Mehal Sefari, literally “the one that camps at the center” are perhaps the most distinctive troops in Haile Selassie’s army. They have not the look of the European style Imperial Guard nor the tribal warriors of the powerful Rases, the Mehal Sefari was older than Emperor himself, forming an important role in Ethiopian society. A significantly large force they were also to provide many recruits to the more professional and better equipped Imperial Guard battalions under the emperors modernisation programme. Dressed in a blend of traditional dress and contemporary military style clothing they make for a unique looking Ethiopian soldier unlike others of their time.
The Mehal Sefari and Kebur Zabanga are closely related so it is convenient to discuss them both in one post. We provide some more detail and discussion behind the thinking when putting together the Chain of Command:Abyssinia army lists. The list may be found here: Mehal Sefari