The monthly Peace Architecture Dialogue (PAD), designed by the Plateau Peace Building Agency (PPBA), to further discuss and fashion out ways for peaceful co-existence among Plateau inhabitants has received a boost from the Embassy of the United States of America in Abuja, aimed at sustaining the fragile peace in the State, even as the 2018 February Local Government elections gets underway.
Speaking yesterday in Jos, at one of its dialogue forum, with the theme tagged “Upcoming Local Government Elections An Emerging Security Challenges In Plateau State”, the Director General PPBA, Joseph Lengmang, said it is crucial to forecast peace before the 2018 February date of the Plateau LG polls.
Joseph said he could recall vividly the 2008 Local Government Elections that ignited the long protracted crisis witnessed in the State, saying that the PPBA has as its mandate to ensure that the coming elections would not generate another round of crisis in the State.
He said, “I am most concern that the forthcoming LG polls will not throw us back into another dark days of the circle of crisis, having the confidence that with the continuous robbing of mind with relevant stakeholders of distinguished Civil Society Organisations (CSO), we shall put our expertise to work to ensure that the out come of the elections will not once again destabilise the current peace being enjoyed.
“I am also hoping that the Plateau State Independent Electoral Commission (PLASIEC), will be able to deliver a credible, free and fair elections: this is very crucial to the maintenance of peace before and after the elections.
“PPBA will not rest on its oars in partnering with relevant stakeholders including PLASIEC towards ensuring that all conflict triggers are duly addressed before the polls”, Lengmang said.
Our correspondent reports that there was a healthy dialogue between various stakeholders in attendance at the PPBA’s meeting such as the PLASIEC Commissioner, representative of head of NGO’s, NDLEA and CSO’s
Participants were allowed to ask questions on critical matters regarding the forthcoming elections as the PLASIEC representative provided answers.
Consequently, responding to participants at the forum, the PLASIEC Commissioner in charge of Electoral Operations, Hon. Patrick Mangim said the commission is fully funded by the state government with the mandate to deliver with international best practices.
Mangim vowed to resign his position if he is intimidated to manipulate the due process to favour the ruling party.
According to him, “I have said at different fora that whoever wins the coming election takes his victory home and that is our stand in PLASIEC regardless of the fact that we are being funded by the government in power.
However, Daily Times hold the view that the regular Peace Architecture Dialogue, supported by the American Embassy to ensure sustenance of a peaceful Plateau will run for a period of nine months, addressing both pre and post-election violence with special attention on farmer/herder conflict.
Kingsley Chukwuka, Jos