Gov. Yahaya Bello of Kogi has enjoined Nigerians to live in peace and harmony irrespective of religious, ethnic and class bagrounds
Bell also urged them to eschew violence for the progress and development of the country.
He made the call while addressing a Peace Walk organised by ActionAid Nigeria in partnership with Participation Initiative for Behavioural Change in Development (PIBCID) in commemoration of the Global Peace Day, 2019, on Saturday in Lokoja.
News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the Programme is being executed under the System and Structure Strengthening Approach Against Radicalisation to Violent Extremism (SARVE 2 ) project funded by Global Community Economic and Resilience Fund (GCERF).
Represented by his Chief of Staff, Chief Edward Onoja, the governor also urged the people of the state to consolidate on the peace so far achieved under his administration in the last three and a half years.
He said that his government had addressed the problem of mutual distrust arising from ethnic, religious and class barriers, broken them into pieces and replaced them with a bridge of handshake partnership and religious harmony.
“Peace is a catalyst for development, a catalyst for empowerment and that is why I want to appreciate ActionAid Nigeria, National Youth council of Nigeria (NYCN), Kogi chapter and all the organisers of this event,”he said.
Bello also commended the the efforts of youths at propagating peace and thanked the Federal Government for giving youths the opportunity to assume leadership positions to impact the nation positively.
Mr Anicetus Atakpu, ActionAid Nigeria, Resilience Programme Coordinator, said ActionAid would continue in its effort at ensuring that there was absolute peace, adding that Kogi that used to be known as crisis zone had become number two in peace in 2018.
“We are not tired and we will continue until Kogi achieves number one position in peace in the comity of states in the country. Kogi state is bordered by many states and it should be an epitome of peace.
Mrs Halima Sadiq, Acting Executive Director, PIBCID, said, “We stand for peace, we have been talking peace, we have had it all and will continue to live it.
NAN reports that placards displayed by the teeming youths read in part, “It is possible to live in peace; We say an eye for an eye makes the world go blind; Peace begins with a smile and I hope all will say no to violent extremism in Kogi”.
Others are: “Honour the past, live in the present; Create the future; Don’t organise violence to agonise,”among others. (NAN)