The National Unity and Peace Corps (NUPEC), a Nigerian peacebuilding organization, has called on non-state actors in the country to embrace peace.
The call was made on Thursday in Abuja by the Commandant General of NUPEC, Dr. Chinedu S. Nneji, in an address on the occasion of the 2023 United Nations’ International Day of Peace Celebration.
Dr. Nneji said that non-state actors, such as bandits, kidnappers, and other criminal elements, have a role to play in achieving peace in Nigeria. He called on them to lay down their arms and embrace positive action, inaction, and ambition.
“Nigeria and Nigerians must embrace positivity in all that we do and say, both individually and collectively,” he said. “Our actions, inactions, and ambitions manifest in the larger society.”
Dr. Nneji also called on the Nigerian government to pass the National Unity and Peace Corps Bill, which is currently before the National Assembly. He said that the passage of the bill will help to strengthen the capacity of NUPEC to promote peace and unity in Nigeria.
The United Nations’ International Day of Peace is celebrated annually on September 21. The theme for this year’s celebration is “Actions for Peace: Our Ambition for the Global Goals.”
Nigeria has been facing a number of security challenges in recent years, including banditry, kidnapping, and insurgency. These challenges have had a negative impact on the country’s economy and social development.
The Nigerian government has taken a number of steps to address these challenges, including deploying security forces to affected areas and launching military operations against insurgents. However, the challenges persist.
Non-state actors, such as bandits and kidnappers, have played a role in the insecurity in Nigeria. These groups have been known to attack villages, kidnap people for ransom, and steal livestock.
The Nigerian government has called on non-state actors to lay down their arms and embrace peace. However, these groups have so far refused to do so.