The Country Director, Global Peace Foundation Nigeria (GPFN), Rev John Hayab, has appealed to bandits, kidnappers, and insurgents to a ceasefire and allow peace to reign in the country.
Hayab made the appeal at the commemoration of International Peace Day 2021, organized by the Ph.D. Students of Peace and Conflict Resolution (PCR), Nasarawa State University, Keffi on Tuesday.
The theme of the event is “Recovering better for an equitable and sustainable world.”
He urged bandits, kidnappers, and insurgents to be kind enough to recognize humanity on “this special day of peace” by not committing or causing any act of violence.
Hayab, who is also the Chairman of, Christian Association of Nigeria (CAN) Kaduna State chapter, said it was imperative for criminals to recognize the importance of peace.
He said that the theme was carefully selected by the United Nations to reflect and heal from the COVID-19 pandemic that had devastated the world’s socio-economic stance.
He stated that the daunting challenges of COVID-19 and insecurity in the society would be squarely tackled if the citizenry work together.
He added that there was a need to collectively strive, regardless of the people’s diverse ethnoreligious differences, to harness ideas, energy, and resources in building resilience.
The peace, according to him, should be geared towards transforming the world into one that was more equal, just, equitable, inclusive, sustainable, and healthier.
The International Day of Peace is observed every Sept. 21.
The UN General Assembly declared Sept. 21, as a day devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace, observing 24 hours of non-violence and cease-fire.
NAN reports that the significance of the International Day of Peace is that there should be a world peace day with the absence of war and violence.
This according to the UN should occasion a temporary ceasefire in combat zones and conflict-affected areas.
The Vice-Chancellor, Nasarawa State University, Prof. Mohammed Bala, commended the students for the initiative.
He added that most agitation going on across the country was for selfish interest, adding that such agitations were meant for political gain.
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He stated that everybody was created by God and nobody chose to be either Yoruba, Hausa, or Igbo, adding that every religion could say their prayers without conflict.
He, however, said that the elite had succeeded at instigating the masses against themselves for selfish interest.
Mr. Ciatus Onuh, a Ph.D. student of Peace and Conflict Studies, Nasarawa, State University, and the Chairman of the Planning Committee for the World Peace Day, said it was imperative to put into practice what the students learned.
He said that it would be foolhardy not to seek peace irrespective of the security challenges bedeviling the country, adding that there was no alternative to peace.
He said that the nationality of the criminals was not his priority but achieving peace in the country, stressing that the peace of the country is nonnegotiable.