The African Union (AU) and Peace Corps of Nigeria (PCN) are forging together to engender peace by ensuring concerted efforts at silencing guns on the African continent for growth and development.
The two organisation made this known on the occasion of the year 2020 United Nations International Day of Peace (UNIDP), organised by the Peace Corps of Nigeria in Abuja.
Speaking on the occasion, the Nigerian representative of the African Union Economic, Social and Cultural Council (AU-ECOSOCC), Dr Tunji John Asaolu said silencing the guns in Africa reflects the AU’s commitment to end wars and illicit proliferation of small arms and light weapons on the continent.
He noted that creating the conditions of peace and stability is necessary to foster development and integration in the continent.
“This is the first time PCN and AU-ECOSOCC Nigeria will be having a week-long of multiple engagements, all geared towards our collective effort to shaping peace together for us to live in harmony in Nigeria and Africa in particular and globally in general. I therefore call other CSOs to emulate the effort of Peace Corps of Nigeria’s advocacy for peaceful coexistence as a panacea for living in harmony in Nigeria.”
He said the people of Africa deeply aspire for an integrated, peaceful and prosperous Africa. Adding that, the aspirations of the African people are contained in the African Union’s Agenda 2063 which aims to support policies and programmes that promote peace, security and prosperity in the continent.
In a welcome address, the national commandant, PCN, Amb Dickson Akoh, said the UNIDP is a day in which individuals, organisations and nations are enjoined to strive towards achieving peace as an indispensable factor of human development and the sustainability of the planet.
Akoh stressed that the event could not have come at a better time than now, that armed conflicts and banditry are insidiously assuming the norm across the globe.
“It is worthy of mention that as an affiliate of the United Nations Economic and Social Council (ECOSOC) and in line with its commitment to promoting National Creativity, Peace and Youth Development, the Peace Corps of Nigeria, in partnership with other major stakeholders, has been celebrating the International Day of Peace annually since 2012.
“The Corps further introduced and duly registered the Sustainable Development Goals (SDG) and other Peace Awards with the National Copyrights Commission, to acknowledge and honour individuals and organisations that have contributed significantly to Good Governance, Transparent Leadership, Youth Empowerment, Peace and Security in line with the specific theme of the celebration for each year.
“For this year’s International Day of Peace celebration, we have chosen the theme,” “Shaping Peace Together: Panacea for living in Harmony,” after the global theme adopted by the United Nations, which is ‘‘Shaping Peace Together”.’’
He said the COVID-19 pandemic has further made manifest, the fact that “we are not really each others enemies and that humans across the globe can actually work together towards eradicating a common enemy, regardless of our racial, religious and political differences”.
Akoh also stressed that the common enemies of humanity such as injustice, disease, poverty, banditry and all forms of criminality find inroads due to the fact that “we have allowed our differences to severe the cord of peace, which should have ordinarily bound us together as an impregnable whole”.