-Blank NEWS Online (NIGERIA) –From Michael EKOKORUWE/Kwale:
THE Special Adviser to Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa, Governor of Delta State, Chief Edwin Uzor says, the SMART Agenda of Okowa administration has created peaceful environment for sustainable development and inclusive government of the state.
Uzor make the statement at Kwale, Ndokwa West local government area of Delta State at the one day stakeholder’s sensitization workshop on ‘enhancing violent conflict prevention through community early warning early response for sustainable peace in Delta State’, held at Christ Anglican Church hall, Umusadebe Kwale.
He stated that Okowa has initiated various peace promotion platforms and involved in peace advocacy programmes to bring peace to communities in the state, adding that “the office of the special adviser to governor Okowa on peace building and conflict resolution in hinged on strong commitment to contribute to peace in the state”.
Uzor maintained that the mission is to ensure that efforts are made to identify communities where there is threat to peace and nip such crisis in the bud. He further stated, “we receive petitions and deal with issues raised to ensure that they do not escalate into intra or inter community unrest”, emphasizing that communities must have peace and live in peace which is essential for development.
The special adviser urged the people to be sensitive to early warning and early response in building peace and strengthen responses to early warning signals through improved synergy to address symptom of conflicts before they escalate into violence.
The sensitization workshop goodwill messages were from the member representing Ndokwa nation in the state house of assembly, hon. Charles Emetulu, represented by Mr. Mgbomene Chukunalu, the chairman of Ndokwa west local government area, hon. Godwin Obi Nzeade, represented by Barr. A. O. Oweike and HRM Isaac Obi Oduosa 1 of Utagba – Ogbe kingdom, represented by high chief Nwose Sunday.
Speaking during the lecture on “Understanding and Strengthening the foundation for community Early warning and Early response, A tool for Effective and Sustainable Violent Prevention in Delta State”, Professor Sam Okala said, typical external conflict has five stages, the beginning, early growth, deadlock, looking for a way out and settling the dispute or resolving the conflict.
Okala stated that there are three types of conflict prevention, operational prevention, structural prevention and systemic prevention and urged the people to engage the youths of communities in active protection of their community. He noted that alertness, sensitivity and proactiveness of the community will strengthen the early warning and early response approach.
On his part, Professor Uwomano Ben Okpevra who spoke on “Building an Effective Relationship and Partnership between the Traditional Rulers, Presidents General, and Community Development Committees as a Strategy for Sustainable Peaceful Coexistence in our Communities in Delta State” urged the leaders to command respect and obeisance from their subjects as means of promoting peace and development of the communities.
While Ambassador Mrs. Caroline Usikpedo – Oliseowe, special assistant to governor Okowa on youth development who spoke on “Women and Youth involvement in community Early Warning Early Response system for Sustainable Violent Prevention” stated that, involving women means that both men and women have the opportunity to report security situation toward conflict prevention.
The women from Umuseti community in Utagba – Ogbe, Kwale during the event staged a peaceful protest led by Mrs. Gloria Gjabegwu. They complaint of bad leaders in the community, which lead to arrest and detention of their children. Chief Uzor immediately responded and assured the women of peaceful resolution just as the issue has been reported to his office.
Those who accompanied chief Uzor during the stakeholder’s sensitization workshop were chief Sam Chukuji, Mr. Uche Nwabukwu, both executive and senior special assistant to governor Okowa on peace building and conflict resolution, Mrs. Ann Chalokwu – Orumade and Dcn. Gabriel Abighe, both SSA and SA to governor Okowa on peace building and conflict resolution.
In attendance was traditional rulers, president’s general and community representatives from various communities of Ndokwa West local government area of Delta State.