An NGO, Zaman Tare (Living Together), Project has organized a three-day training for religious and community leaders, women, and youth groups in Plateau on Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR).
Speaking at the training on Monday in Jos, the Field Officer of the project, Miss Saratu Magaji, said the exercise was aimed at promoting peaceful coexistence in communities.
Magaji said the training on ADR became necessary being a key issue raised by stakeholders in previous training programs as part of problems leading to violent conflicts in communities.
She also said that the training was aimed at promoting religious and cultural pluralism in communities, which was the focus of the Zaman Tare project.
She explained that the training would avail participants with the requisite knowledge on ways to amicably resolve disputes that largely led to violent conflicts in communities.
“Zaman Tare is a project that is funded by European Union (EU) with support from the Catholic Agency for Overseas Development (CAFOD) and the Dialogue Reconciliation and Peace Centre (DREP).
“The project is aimed at promoting religious and cultural pluralism in communities in Plateau and Nigeria.
“From the outcome of our previous training, we have discovered that ADR has been one thing that is missing, and its absence has led to violent conflicts in the communities.
“So, we decided to bring these key stakeholders here to educate them on the ways to resolve disputes in the communities without necessarily involving the law enforcement agencies,” the field officer said She said that the participants were drawn from six communities, which include:
Filin Ball, Jenta Adamu, Dadin Kowa, Congo Rusha, Mai Adiko, and Abattoir, all in Jos North and Jos South local government areas of the state.
Earlier, Mrs. Sumaiya Mohammed, the lead facilitator at the training, said the exercise would boost the knowledge of the participants in addressing conflicts in communities.
Mohammed, who is the Team Lead of Mediation and Dialogue Unit of the Plateau Peace Building Agency (PPBA), said the need for a shift in the way conflict should be managed necessitated the exercise.
“We are having a paradigm shift from the way people get to understand conflict to a better and approachable one in the peace process.
“Conflict is inevitable and so we have to device alternative ways to manage the conflicts as they arise in communities; so it doesn’t escalate into violent conflicts,” she said.
Newsmen report that the training was attended by government officials and representatives of security agencies