By Ochiaka Ugwu
The federal government under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari is steadily building bridges of cohesion in Nigeria and Africa, the Director General, Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution (IPCR) Prof. Bakut tswah Bakut has said.
Bakut who made this known yesterday in Abuja during a Conference on Peace, Diversity and Education organized by the institute in collaboration with University of Bradford said that IPCR and University of Bradford have a long history of strategic collaboration, especially in enhancing the capacities of some of Nigerian thinkers.
According to Bakut, “The Federal Government of Nigeria, especially under the leadership of President Muhammadu Buhari, GCFR has continued to build bridges that would strengthen and foster internal cohesion within Nigeria and indeed across Africa through policies and programmes.
“For instance, the Nigerian Technical Aid Scheme (TAC) is aimed at assisting other sister African countries with specialized manpower and in so doing providing the platform for broader continental engagements.
“In fact, some of the Nigerians that were deployed to these locations have married our African brothers and sisters.
“Similarly, the National Youth Service Scheme of the Federal Government has been strengthened under the current administration in order to encourage national cohesion, integration and unity.
“Doubtlessly, the continent of Africa has continued to grapple with numerous challenges associated with diversity, but these are not necessarily caused and sustained it. This Conference is deliberate in noting the imperative of education as a veritable tool for peace, security and development.
“It is important also to underscore the place of peace education in changing people perception on societal issues. Peace education inoculates citizens against tendencies that breed violence and dysfunctional conflicts by inculcating in them the values of the culture of peace” he said.
Speaking also, Vice Chancellor of University of Bradford, Professor Brian Cantor who said it was a pleasure for him to be in Nigeria informed the peace conference was first held in Addis-Ababa three years ago and that made them to see reason to host it here.
He said the varsity that was built in 1966 by the then Prime Minister of Great Britain, Mr. James Harold Wilson believes in applied research that is interested in making people improve their life aims.
He said the university has about 2000 alumni in Nigeria which had distinguished themselves in their chosen carriers.
He said everything depends on education and it is the bedrock of development.
The Keynote Speaker and erudite professor of law of University of Jos, Prof. Dakas Dakas stated that the resilient of human nature is to overcome adversity and diversity is something to be celebrated.
He said we should open up discussion on how best to manage our affairs.
Dakas said when there is deficit in government, diversity becomes conflict trigger.