BY KINGSLEY OKOH, Lagos
Stakeholders in the African Heritage Institute (AfriHeritage) has formed partnership with the Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution (IPCR) to chart the way forward for peace and conflict resolutions, following the incessant security challenges in Nigeria.
Through this partnership, AfriHeritage, IPCR and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs will synergise and work closely to bring transformative public policies in Nigeria and Africa by ensuring that salient issues that shape development and public policy in the country are debated on national platforms
To this end, Africa Heritage Institute, a non-partisan and independent think-tank will hold its April 2021 Big Ideas Podium in collaborative efforts with the IPCR and Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The event, which is scheduled to hold on April 29, 2021, will take place virtually with the theme: ‘Trends and Dynamics of Armed Banditry: Making Sense of the Problem’.
This will see improved collaborative efforts with IPCR as both parties are committed to ideate and bridge the data gap in the formulation and implementation of transformative public policies in the continent.
The 2021 edition of the Big Ideas Podium will have notable experts, industry players and policy makers as part of the plenary session to ideate and suggest proactively achievable solutions against armed banditry in Nigeria.
Meanwhile, the keynote address will be delivered by the executive director, African Network for Peace Building, Accra, Ghana, Dr. Chukwuma B. Eze. The plenary session will also feature Dr. Anthony Odo Agbor of the Federal University, Wukari, Taraba State (Impact on families, livelihoods and Human Security); Dr. Kingsley Udeh Esq., special adviser to the Governor of Enugu State on Education (Impact on education and human capital development).
The executive director of AfriHeritage, Prof. Ufo Okeke-Uzodike, reiterated that the importance and effectiveness of neutral platforms like the ‘Big Ideas Podium’ in providing vital opportunities where all stakeholders – academia, civil society, business, and government – can come together to brainstorm on critical issues and suggest policy ideas and workable solutions.
He said: “Truly, informed policy dialogue is vital for effective governance and transformative development, especially when all participants and stakeholders involved can make their contributions on the chosen subject matter freely and without bias.”
Confirming the development, the director-general, IPCR, Dr. Bakut Tswah Bakut, said Nigeria has been embroiled with myriads of violent conflicts and the recent surge in armed banditry and kidnappings were further heightening the already saturated climate of insecurity in the country.
He said IPCR remains optimistic that these challenges are not insurmountable given the capacities and competence of peace-building structures that abound in the country.
Bakut admitted that IPCR will continue to maintain good faith in the unity and existence of one purposeful Nigeria while calling on “all stakeholders and peace loving men and women of our dear country to demonstrate the zeal to change the tide and proactively work to overcome this menace.”