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Government must urgently address issues of poverty, injustice to restore peace in Nigeria, expert warns

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A man throws a tyre a bonfire on the Kaduna-Abuja highway in Gauruka, near Abuja, Nigeria, on May 24, 2021 during a protest against incessant kidnapping and killing after gunmen kidnapped 16 residents and killed three others in Niger State. (Photo by Kola Sulaimon / AFP)

A researcher with Bayero University, Aminu Kano Centre for Democratic Research and Training, Mumbayya House, Dr. Mustapha Isiaku, has challenged the Federal Government to urgently address prevailing agitation raging across the country before its degenerated.

He made the call at a stakeholders’ workshop on conflict resolution management and peaceful coexistence in the country, organised by Afripeace Sustainable Development Foundation.

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Isiaku, a renowned conflict management expert, declared that Nigeria is faced with avalanche of unrest across the country due to failure of successive governments to quickly address security, inequality and lopsidedness in the country.

He disclosed that rampaging agitations in the country are being fuelled by injustice, uneven distribution of resources, poverty and scarce resources.

The don, who lamented economic inadequacy and total neglect of some parts of the country by the Federal Government said the concern of aggrieved segments of the society must be addressed before the agitation escalated.

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He believed the farmer herders crisis could have been avoided if necessary conflict management and dialogue were deployed in the first instance.

He said: “The absence of crisis does not actually means there is peace in the society. No doubt, the country is facing real challenges rising from agitation of injustice, security threat, uneven distribution of common wealth, poverty and several instabilities.

“But government is expected to deploy all necessary measures of conflict resolution management to manage and settle the plights of those aggrieved. What is urgent now is for government to dialogue with the aggrieved parties and address their challenges if not all.”

Programme Manager, Afripeace Foundation, Rahab Yachat Kwaja, explained that the workshop was intended to build capacity of non-governmental organisations, women groups and community leaders on conflict resolution management in their communities.

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She said Afripeace, which focused on promotion of education and peace in rural communities, drawn critical stakeholders to discus violence extremism and exploring ideals how such violence can be mitigated.

She hinted that the capacity building forum being organised by AFripeace to promote peaceful co-existence in Nigeria is supported by Open Society Initiative for West Africa (OSIWA), a non-profit making international organisation committed to global peace.

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