The Director General of Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution (IPCR), Dr. Bakut Tswah Bakut has said that interface between policymakers and critical community stakeholders, especially the faith community, is fundamental for sustainable peace, security and development.
Dr. Bakut spoke on Thursday in Abuja during the Third Quarter Policy Review Meeting of the Network of Policymakers to Support Reconciliation, Peace and Security in Nigeria, with the theme: Building Inclusive Peace and Security: Strategies for Critical Stakeholders in Nigeria, attended by religious leaders and other stakeholders in the country.
In his welcome address at the meeting held at the Institute, Dr. Bakut said that the meeting become very important in the face of the escalating trends of violent conflicts, criminality and insecurity as occasioned by perception of exclusion and marginalisation.
Bakut said: “Facilitating an interface between policymakers and critical community stakeholders, especially the faith community, is fundamental for sustainable peace, security and development. To be sure, the determination to move international, regional and national institutions from the firm-grip officialdom back to the people is evident in the recent reforms taking place even the Economic Community of West African State (ECOWAS), African Union (AU) and the United Nations (UN).
“For instance, the ECOWAS vision 2020 is a drive towards the transformation of the Commission into a people-centred organisation.
“Similarly, the African Union (AU) Agenda 2063 that is titled, the Africa We Want: A Shared Strategic Framework for Inclusive Growth and Sustainable Development has seven aspirations.
“These aspirations are people-driven, including: a prosperous Africa based on inclusive growth and sustainable; an integrated continent, politically united and based on the ideals of pan Africanism and vision of Africa’s renaissance; an Africa of good governance, democracy, respect for human rights, justice, and the rule of law; a peaceful and secure Africa; African with a strong cultural identity, common heritage, values and ethics; an Africa whose development is people-driven, relying on the
potential of the African people, particularly its women and youth and caring for children; and Africa as a strong, united, resilient and influential global partner and player.
“At the United Nations levels, several mechanisms have been designed to facilitate the inclusion of the people in peace and security, especially the UNSCR 1325 on Women, Peace and Security as well as UNSCR 2250 on Youth, Peace and Security. In the 2000 document titled, We the People: The Role of the United Nations in the 21st Century, the then UN Secretary-General, Kofi Annan urged the international community to locate the people in every discourse on globalisation, education, health, peace, security, and so on.
“He wrote that, No shift in the way we think or act can be more critical than this: we must put people at the center of everything we do.”
The DG of IPCR further said that “it is within the context of the foregoing that the theme of this Third Quarter Policy Review Meeting becomes very germane.
“In discussing Building Inclusive Peace and Security: Strategies for Critical Stakeholders in Nigeria, this Network is invited to review and strengthen existing policies, and design policies, that relate to peace and security.
“We are also invited to propose strategies for the integration of critical stakeholders into the peace and security framework in the country. These have become very important today in the face of the escalating trends of violent conflicts, criminality and insecurity as occasioned by perception of exclusion and marginalisation.”