The African Union, Economic, Social Cultural Council (AUECOSOCC), in partnership with the Peace Corps of Nigeria (PCN) has pledge its commitment to end guns violence across the country.
The national commandant of PCN, Dr Dickson Akoh, disclosed this in a working and familiarisation visit of AUECOSOCC to the headquarters of Peace Corps of Nigeria, Thursday in Abuja said in a bid to truly and permanently silent the guns in Africa, there is need to adequately address all the factors that predispose people to the gun culture.
He said, “Unfortunately, after the elections are won or lost and the politicians are done with the services of their hired gunmen, often youths, they jettison them, Armed them with guns and hard drugs, these desperate youths vent their expostulations with these powerful politicians which they no longer have access to, by hurting anyone or anything that stands in their way.
“These aforementioned factors, among others, must be urgently addressed, and the only way of achieving this is to embark on sustainable peace education, where our youths will gradually be educated to unlearn the deeply ingrained culture of violence, and in its place, learn the virtues of peaceful coexistence and the practices of the culture of nonviolence.”
He appeals to egocentric politicians and ethnic warlords to have a change of heart. Rather than equipping “our teeming but unemployed youths with guns, they will do better in creating a peaceful society through massive job creation and genuine empowerment of the youths”.
In his remarks, Nigerian representative to the African Union, Economic, Social Cultural Council (AUECOSOCC), Dr Tunji John Araolu, said, “African Union ECOSOCC Nigeria in fulfilment of its mandate to mobilise and coordinate all civil society organisations for positive citizens’ engagement calls for action to stop gun violence which in Nigeria has led to gross under development resulting from cultism, banditry, inter communal clashes, kidnapping, militancy, insurgency and all other societal vices.”
He called on the Nigerian government to increase awareness for peace building, alternative dispute resolutions, security education, mopping-up of small and light weapons and reduction of cross border crimes and arms proliferations by supporting Peace Corps of Nigeria to achieve her sets objectives in all ramifications.