Wednesday 25th January, 2017
Translate Language:::
Share

European Union's panacea for peaceful co-existence in Plateau, Kaduna States

European Union's panacea for peaceful co-existence in Plateau, Kaduna States

Peace building is a term describing outside in­terventions that are designed to prevent the start or resumption of violent conflict within a nation by creating a sustainable peace.
 
Peace building activities address the root causes or potential causes of violence, create a societal expectation for peaceful conflict resolu­tion and stabilize society po­litically and socio econom­ically.
 
In 2007, the UN Secre­tary-General’s Policy Com­mittee defined peace build­ing as a range of measures targeted to reduce the risk of lapsing or relapsing into conflict by strengthening national capacities at all levels for conflict manage­ment, and to lay the foun­dations for sustainable peace and development.
 
However, Plateau State, situated in the Middle Belt region (North-Central), is one of the crossroads of Ni­geria and is home to a di­verse population of over 3 million people and over 50 ethnic groups cutting across 17 Local Government Areas.
 
The State has gone through different stages of conflict or conflict circle times over.
 
Since 12th April, 1994 when the city of Jos first lost its ambience of peace in a span of over a century, there have been several clashes with improved sophistry in progression.
 
There was yet another on 7th September, 2001, then that of Yelwan-Shendam in 2004 before the one of No­vember 28th, 2008. As if the very last, January 17th 2010 became that black day when the city of Jos record­ed yet another round of vio­lent orgy before the Sunday, 7th March, 2010 killings of scores of people, mostly women and children at Dy­emburuk a boundary be­tween Jos South and Barkin Ladi LGAs. It was followed by the 2010, Christmas Eve bomb blast, which also killed scores of people living sev­eral others injured, and many with permanent de­formation, the August 29th, 2011Rukuba unrest after an Eid prayer, the clash at Bar­kin Ladi town in October 2011, another was that of 8th July, 2012, where Late Sen. Gyang Dantong and Late Hon. Gyang Fulani, the Ma­jority Leader of the Plateau State House Assembly were killed when unknown assail­ants attacked them at a fu­neral, at Maseh village, in Riyom Local Government of the State.
 
During the crises, the worst hit areas were Riyom, Barkin-Ladi and Jos South Local Government Areas where midnight attacks, kill­ing of farmers and herdsmen on the fields, rustling and theft of cattle as well as the destruction of farmlands be­came commonplace.
 
However, in its efforts to stem the tide of conflicts in communities hitherto af­fected by conflicts, in Pla­teau and Kaduna States, the European Union had orga­nized dialogue sessions on peaceful coexistence for key stakeholders from the com­munities, through a Non-Governmental Organisation Community Action for Pop­ular Participation (CAPP), who had trained 1, 200 per­sons in 40 communities on how to mediate in conflict management amongst com­munities in the in ten local governments in the afore­mentioned States.
 
This intervention is tagged: “Plateau Will Arise” (PWA) Phase 2, is an 18 month programme fund­ed by the European Union, implemented by Search for Common Ground in part­nership with Community Action for Popular Partici­pation.
 
According to the Program Manager, Community Ac­tion for Popular Participa­tion, Mr. Nelson Ananze, in a chat with journalists in Jos, at end of the Phase 2 proj­ect; said the European Union did some community inter­ventions in some communi­ties in Plateau and Kaduna States.
 
Ananze added that the “Plateau Will Arise” Phase 2 initiative which is an 18 months programme, com­menced in July, 2015, was initially meant for Plateau State, but had to be extend­ed to Kaura LGA of Kadu­na State, because it shares boundary with Riyom LGA of Plateau State and some­times the conflicts spills from Kaduna State to Pla­teau and vice-versa, hence the need for the extension.
 
“Plateau Will Arise Phase 2 was specifically directed at consolidating the architec­ture of peace, tolerance and reconciliation in Plateau and Kaduna States.
 
According to him, CAPP’s role as implementing part­ners was to conduct step­down training on conflict transformation with the two new local governments (Langtang North and Kaura in Plateau and Kaduna States respectively) introduced in the Phase 2 of the project.
 
“There was training of trainers on conflict trans­formation and CAPP under­took the stepdown training for the community mem­bers in Langtang North and Kaura, which includes youths, local security ac­tors, women and religious leaders.
 
“Another aspect of the project which we had han­dled which was also very vast, was the Locally Led Conflict Respond Process­es in all the 40 communi­ties in Plateau and Kaduna States, if there are emerging conflict issues, we had gone there to address, through di­alogue process, mediation or sensitization.
 
“In most cases there were land disputes, chieftaincy is­sues and community issues that might have triggered conflict.
 
The Program Manag­er further explained that in other cases were the issue of farmer/herder clashes, most especially in Riyom, Barkin Ladi and Wase local govern­ments; we were able to bring both parties together to talk and find amicable ways of resolving their areas of fric­tion, which was a success.
 
He maintained that for the “Locally Led Conflict Respond Processes”, some­times they don’t have to plan before visiting the commu­nities, “we just respond to conflict that is happening in a particular community, before it escalates, which we have done.
 
On the benefits of the trainings, Ananze said, “The conflict transformation trainings has given the com­munities some skills on how to resolve conflict locally.
 
“And from the feedback we are getting, they have been using what they have learned to settle local dis­putes within their com­munities. It is when its too much that they bring us in.
 
“In the area of settling of dispute, for instance, there are some communities in Kwalla district, in Qua’an Pan Local Government, that’s the Mida and Shanfu, for several years they have been fighting over owner­ship of a particular land, we started right from the first Phase of Plateau Will Arise project, but we could not resolve it, until during the Phase 2 of the project, and now they are leaving peace­fully.
 
Meantime the 40 communities which benefited from the trainings and dia­logue sessions includes- Jos North LGA(Anguwan Ru­kuba, Congo-Russia, Jen­ta Adamu and Kabong), Jos South LGA (Bukuru, Gyel, Gero and Kuru), Riyom LGA (Bachi, Ganawuri, Ri­yom town and Rim), Barkin Ladi LGA (Soi, Sho, Kok and Bisichi).
 
Others are Bokkos LGA (Manguna, Fakkos, Mbar and Mongor), Shendam LGA (Shendam town, Yel­wa, Yemini and Kuka), Wase LGA (Wase town, Kadarko, Duwi and Lambs), Qua’an Pan LGA (Kwala, Doemak, Namu and Kurgwi), Lang­tang North LGA (Kuffen, Pilgani, Bwarat and Gazum), all in Plateau State, while Kaura LGA (Kagoro, Kaura town, Maro’a and Takad) are in Kaduna State.
 
With all these efforts put in place by Search for Com­mon Ground and Com­munity Action for Popular Participation, backed by the European Union, would the desired peace be achieved?
 
In the case of Plateau, rel­ative peace is being enjoyed in over a year now; but for Kaduna State same cannot be said as most communi­ties in the Southern Senato­rial District of the State are facing serious security chal­lenges.
 
However, only time will tell, as these measures are being implemented.

SHARE ON: