Community Initiatives to Promote Peace (CIPP) a Non Governmental Organisation (NGO), on Friday cautioned youths against electoral violence and intolerance to maintain peace in communities during the 2023 general elections.
Mrs Bola Nelson, Coordinator of CIPP, gave the advice at a one-day workshop organised in conjunction with USAID, Mercy Corps and Youths Critical Discussion, parents and youths from Adankolo community and religious leaders in Lokoja.
Nelson said parents, community and religious leaders played vital roles in moulding the hearts and attitudes of our teaming youths for a peaceful society.
“Electoral violence is one of the major catalyst of crises and destruction of lives and property in our communities and we felt we should start tackling it with seriousness now that we are in the season of elections.
“We expect the participants of our programme to be good ambassadors, who will stand for peace and speak peace to their wards, families, neighbours, communities and organisations.
“We expect them to go and educate our youths not to allow themselves to be used by bad elements or politicians to disrupt the peace of our communities before, during and after elections,’’ she said.
Nelson also called on parents and religious leaders as ambassadors, to caution youths against hate speeches, rumour mongering, fake news and temperament.
“Discipline is key towards obtaining and maintaining peaceful communities for the desired economic growth and development,” she said.
A resource person, Mrs Esther Perter-Sanda, said that the role of parents in the upbringing of children could not be over emphasised, given its importance to a peaceful society.
Perter-Sanda said that in a family, there were differences just as in politics, especially in choice of political parties or candidates.
She said once there was respect and tolerance, peace would reign supreme in that home and community.
“We expect you to go and teach the youths on the need for them to be disciplined and maintain peace during the forthcoming general elections for meaningful development to take place.
“In fact, without peace, there can’t be any meaningful development in any society, therefore we must keep preaching peace to our youths, who are the leaders of tomorrow, “she said.
Mrs salamatu Yakubu, a resource person and member of the Youths Critical Discussion Group of Adankolo community, described the programme as “very apt and an eye opener” to the teaming youths of Adankolo community.
One of the participants, Miss Blessing Okeku, appreciated the organisers of the workshop, adding that the workshop would impact on the youth positively.(www