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Nigerian Ambassadors for Peace to launch South East Peace Council

Dr. Raphael Ogar Oko, Secretary General, Universal Peace Federation-Nigeria

The Universal Peace Federation, an interreligious and international NGO dedicated to the building of world peace has pledge to mobilize her growing network of Ambassadors for Peace to establish the South East Peace Council (SEPC) as a response to the challenges facing the zone and Nigeria.

As a follow up of the organization’s inaugural zonal assembly in

Onitsha, Anambra State, the group is working on the recommendation for the establishment of an all-inclusive structure for peace in the zone that will promote dialogue, mobilize stakeholders to mediate and educate for peace.

Speaking to Awake News, the Secretary General of Universal Peace Federation -Nigeria, Dr. Raphael Ogar Oko said “the South East Peace Council (SEPC) will facilitate the realization of peace in the zone and provide the basis for a zonal culture and infrastructure for peace.”

According to him “the initiative is part of efforts by the Universal Peace Federation -Nigeria and her network of Ambassadors for Peace as well as other credible stakeholders to provide a platform for dialogue and interaction toward sustainable peace. It is hoped that the South East Peace Council will bring together stakeholders to work toward peace in the zone.”

Explaining the role of Peace Council, Dr. Oko said the “members will come from all walks of life representing many communities, religions, ethnic nationalities, and cultures in the South East, and commit to:
-Stand on the common ground of universal moral principles, promoting reconciliation, overcoming barriers, and building peace.
– Form a network representing the diversity of the human family in the South East and all disciplines of endeavor.
– Promote cooperation beyond boundaries of religion, community, and ethnic nationality.
– Practice “living for the sake of others” as the guiding principle for building a sustainable peaceful community.”

Dr. Oko added that the UPF Nigeria has followed with keen interest the situation in the South East, including the actions of IPOB leaders and members as well as the consequent reactions of the Federal Government of Nigeria through the military. This situation UPF describes as unfortunate.

“We are bothered by this unfortunate situation and wish to express our concern on the potential of the situation
escalating beyond expectations. We are cautioning against unguarded expressions by the civilian population as well as the show of force by the military” – Dr. Oko said

In an interview with Awake News’ this is what Dr. Ogar Oko has to say about their plans to help resolve the conflict:

“We are aware that fighting, no matter how necessary it may be, does not resolve any conflict in a sustainable manner. There is an urgent need for dialogue of all stakeholders now. As we progress into the week of the UN International Day of Peace, there is the need for an immediate ceasefire on both sides of IPOB and the military. To ensure that we prevent the escalation of the situation, we are calling on all sides to embrace ceasefire and allow stakeholders to dialogue on the way forward.

As a peace building organization, we are adding our voices to call for peace in the South East and call both IPOB and the military to order now. On our part, we are working toward the immediate launch of the South East Peace Council, as a deliberative structure to engage all stakeholders for dialogue toward genuine reconciliation. We are mobilizing our Ambassadors for Peace and other stakeholders to join the South East Peace Council to commence peace building initiatives in the zone.

We will work with all groups to ensure that the concerns that have degenerated into the present situation will be addressed on a win-win situation for all sides. We are hopeful that the government and good people of the South East zone as well as other stakeholders in the national peace aspiration will support and embrace this initiative. We call on the Governors of the South East to consider endorsing the idea of the South East Peace Council and to recommend representatives that will be included in the Council too.”

About Efo Korsi Senyo

Efo Korsi Senyo has over 4 years experience working as investigative journalist with Awake Africa. He is the Head of Awake Investigates. Connect with him via senyo@awakeafrica.com or WhatsApp: +233249155003

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