In his efforts to promote peaceful coexistence, harmonious living and love in the troubled Southern Kaduna, the Executive Secretary Nigeria Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC), Rev. Dr. Yakubu Pam in conjunction with TETFUND, Inter-Faith Groups and Concerned Citizens of Southern Kaduna organized a three-day Peace Summit with the theme “De-escalating Violence in Southern Kaduna”
The Peace Summit brought together Religious Leaders Traditional Leaders, Community Leaders, Professionals, Security Experts, Youths and Women Together.
In his remark, Rev. Yakubu Pam disclosed that the summit is aimed at engendering and promoting sincere peace.
He lauded the frankness of the participants at the summit saying the outcome of the summit will enhance peace if properly domesticated.
He said the Summit intends to achieve the following objectives; to create a platform to assess and deliberate and the issues, the trigger and sustainable factors as well as the way forward, to deliberate on and harmonize the viable appropriate best practices for conflict prevention and mitigation in Southern Kaduna, and to identify common ways and means to addressing and preventing all issues leading to the seemingly intractable conflict in Southern Kaduna.
He said having visited the displaced persons and listened to victims, NCPC will provide humanitarian supports to the people to alleviate the hardships they are facing.
Others who spoke harped on the need for genuine reconciliation, Peaceful Coexistence, Truth, sincerity of purpose, mutual respect for each other’s faith, greater understanding and tolerance if peace is to be achieved.
They said Civilization should make us live peacefully with one another not the other way round that is obtainable today.
Participants lauded the organizers for the initiative, and said they will step down what they learnt to benefit more people.
They also commended the Resource Persons for the things learnt and Apostle Emmanuel Kure for hosting the summit and prayed God to grant him wisdom in his Ministry.
In his remarks, Apostle Emmanuel Kure charged leaders to give special attention to the youths who are agents of violent crisis.
Dr. Kure posited that Religious Leaders, Political Leaders and Traditional Leaders have critical roles to play in the peace process.
He said For there to be peace, people must agree to live in peace.
He observed that mutual suspicion has affected the Peace process calling on Leaders to be mindful of their utterances.
“Stereotyping disposition must stop and trust must be rebuilt”
“Concentration should be on those things that engender unity and there is need to discard disuniting sentiments” he concluded.
The Chief Executive Kaduna State Peace Commission, Mrs. Priscilla Ankut while delivering the goodwill of the Executive Governor of Kaduna State, Mal. Nasir El-rufai appreciated NCPC for the well thought initiative and said the Governor is ready to receive and work with the communique.
She said Security agencies have brought respite to communities affected by violent crisis and said government will continue to provide dialogue platform to unearth the problems militating against peaceful coexistence and identifying key drivers of the conflict in Kaduna State.
She urged the participants to embrace peace and discard any divisive and crisis tendencies.
Goodwill messages came from Gen. Martins Lurther Agwai (Rtr), Gen. Zamani Lekwot (Rtr) who were represented, other religious and traditional Leaders. Other stakeholders who attended were Pastor Dr. James Wuye Movel, Rev. Dr. Yusuf Biniyat, Rev. Gideon Para Mallam.
Paper presenters were;
- Prof. Suleiman Elias Bogoro
- Dr. Salim Musa Umar
- Prof. James Kantiok
- Prof. Christiana Best
The Summit which held at at Throne-Room, Kafanchan, Kaduna State produced the Communique below;
COMMUNIQUE ISSUED AT THE END OF A 3-DAY SOUTHERN KADUNA PEACE SUMMIT HELD FROM 8TH-10TH SEPTEMBER, 2020, AT THRONE-ROOM, KAFANCHAN
As part of the continuous efforts at restoring peace to Southern Kaduna, the National Christian Pilgrims Commission (NCPC) in collaboration with other inter-faith groups and Friends of Southern Kaduna organized a 3-day peace Summit with the theme: “The De-escalation of Conflict in Southern Kaduna And The Way Forward”. The Summit, which is one of a number of other peace initiatives, held on Tuesday 8th-Thursday 10th September, 2020, at Throne-Room, Kafanchan.
The Summit had the following objectives:
- To create a platform to assess and deliberate on the issues, the trigger and sustainable factors as well as the way forward.
- To deliberate on and harmonize the viable appropriate best practices for conflict prevention and mitigation in Southern Kaduna, and
- To identify common ways and means to addressing and preventing all issues leading to the seemingly intractable conflict in Southern Kaduna.
The summit was attended by over 200 participants.
The Summit was declared open by Rev. Dr. Yakubu Pam with other dignitaries in attendance.
The following papers were presented:
Strategies for Mitigating and De-escalating of Violent Killings in Southern Kaduna
Promoting Interfaith Dialogue and Inter-Community Dialogue as a Panacea for Peace-Building in Southern Kaduna
Bridging the gap in the Southern Kaduna Conflict Narrative: Perspectives about the role of Women, Youth and Children
Approaches to Post Conflict Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Reintegration of Victims of violence in Southern Kaduna.
The Summit has the following objectives:
1.To create a platform to assess and deliberate on the issues, the trigger and sustainable factors as well as the way forward.
2.To deliberate on and harmonize the viable appropriate best practices for conflict prevention and mitigation in Southern Kaduna, and
3.To identify common ways and means to addressing and preventing all issues leading to the seemingly intractable conflict in Southern Kaduna.
After very robust, frank and engaging discussion and interaction, Summit participants made the following observations:
- Incessant killings, kidnapping, cattle rustling and shielding of criminals is a major challenge
- There is extreme poverty in the land arising from unemployment and limited opportunities
- Farming on cattle routes, open grazing and grazing using minors
- The issue of settler/indigene is a major concern to the effort of building peace in Southern Kaduna
- There is gap in communication leading to mutual distrust and suspicion among the diverse communities
- The exclusion of women and youth in all formal peace processes, increase in Gender Based Violence and the plight of women and children in IDPs are major challenges
- Pronouncements and conducts by some government officials and reports by the media escalate tensions within the social space
- There were concerns over government policy regarding traditional institutions vis-a-viz their place towards harmonious coexistence for stability
- Due to drug and substance abuse among youths, there is Incessant Illegal road blocks on highways targeted against innocent people on transit during conflicts
- Lack of feedback mechanisms for monitoring and evaluation of the peace process
- Incessant occupation of communities, villages, and farmland following conflicts with no right of return
- There is lack of Early Warning Early Response mechanism
Based on the foregoing observations, participants made the following recommendations for consideration and action by communities and relevant authorities:
- Immediate cessation of killings, attacks, kidnappings and cattle rustlings
- Create collaborative, economic activities for peoples of Southern Kaduna
- Stopping minors from grazing alone, farming on grazing routes and deliberate destruction of farm crops
- Avoid any action or utterances that make people feel they don’t belong
- There should be deliberate efforts to recognize and celebrate our differences
- Women and youth should be included in all formal peace processes
- All inciting statements and speeches should be avoided by all
- Government policy with regards to traditional institutions should be reviewed in collaboration with the communities to ensure peace and stability
The summit recommends that reprisal attacks have been identified as one of the causes of the killings in Southern Kaduna that appears like a justification of the attacks.
The Summit therefore calls on all leaders at local, state and national levels to avoid all that bothers on appearance of taking sides and not being impartial judges.
The Summit also recommends that there are other serious observations that bother on the end of the killings and conflict that are to be conveyed to the federal and state governments, issues perceived to be the causes of the festering violence that will be communicated in separate letters to the President and the Governor of the State.
Summit participants deeply appreciate NCPC, TETFUND and Friends of Southern Kaduna for organizing the Summit. They also thanked Apostle Emmanuel Kure for graciously making the venue and facilities available. Summit participants expressed their profound gratitude to His Excellency, Governor of Kaduna State, Mallam Nasir Ahmed El-Rufai for giving the go ahead for the Summit to hold.
The media is also appreciated for their efforts during the Summit.
Participants appealed for greater understanding and sustained peace building efforts by all stakeholders.
Prof. Abdullahi Ashafa and Rev. Prof. Sunday Bobai Agang
Co Chairmen of Communique Committee
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