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Attacks: NGO tasks Plateau communities on sustainable peace

By Isa Abdulsalami Ahovi, Jos
11 December 2023   |   2:56 am
To achieve sustainable peace in Plateau State, Pastoral Resolve (PARE), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), has called on communities to commit to conflict resolution through dialogue.

Plateau State PHOTO: Getty Images

To achieve sustainable peace in Plateau State, Pastoral Resolve (PARE), a Non-Governmental Organisation (NGO), has called on communities to commit to conflict resolution through dialogue.

Programme Manager of PARE, Muhammad Sanusi, made the call in a chat with journalists, yesterday, after the organisation closed its activities in Bokkos, Riyom, Barkin Ladi and Bassa local councils for onward take-over by the respective councils’ administrations.

For the past 10 years, violent conflicts between farmers and herders had claimed several lives in many Plateau communities with property worth millions of naira destroyed.

It was for this reason that, for the past four years, PARE, which has been working to promote peaceful coexistence in conflict-prone local councils, in collaboration with other partners, has been working to encourage inter-group understanding and advocacy campaigns in the most affected councils, including Barkin Ladi, Riyom, Bokkos and Bassa.

Sanusi frowned on the frequent waves of violent attacks in Plateau, saying that farmers and herders communities could help reverse the trend by challenging their members to be law-abiding. He said the state was worse off with attacks and violence.

He said: “We will continue to encourage the people until permanent peace is restored in the communities. I can say that the peace project we started in Plateau since 2019 has achieved a lot, though there is still more to be done because the dynamics keep changing.

“What we have done, I can say, is over 70 per cent because there are instances where we have communities that could not sit together to discuss issues; but now, they can do that. When we started the project, some communities were categorised as no-go areas for the farming communities and for the herders as well, but with our engagements with them, a lot of these areas are now open under the resource utilisation agreement that allows each group to have access to these resources.”

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