Anyaoku, Gambari, others task Nigerians on peace-building



FORMER Commonwealth Secretary-General, Emeka Anyaoku, and other dignitaries yesterday charged Nigerians to unite and be peace ambassadors to enhance development.

This call was made at a book launch titled “Consolidating peace in Africa: The Role of the United Nations (UN) Peace-building Commission” by Ejeviome Eloho Otobo held at the Nigerian Institute of International Affairs (NIIA), Victoria Island, Lagos.

Anyaoku, who was chair of the event, said Otobo’s contributions to the UN and Nigeria at ensuring a peaceful co-existence across the globe was highly visible and appreciated.

Recalling the first time he met Otobo in 2005, Anyaoku said: “I was invited to chair a penal, and Otobo was the secretary and principal officer who brought to the penal his great experience and drafting skills, and he has been a visible columnist in the New York Times.

In his paper, Gambari said: “Why should we be interested in peace-building? What peace-building efforts should be undertaken by Nigeria to address some of its current problems? And where does this book on peace-building fit into Nigeria’s current national efforts in this area?”

Gambari, who served in the UN at various capacities, asserted that peace-building has political and socio-economic dimensions, adding: “Peace-building is a process through which societies and individuals affected by conflict are enabled or assisted to re-start their means of livelihood, promote reconciliation and revive the economic, political and social institutions that allow their society function normally.”

According to him, the entire world is interested in peace-building “at basic level, fundamental level and efforts are aimed at addressing the root causes of the conflicts such that peace endures.”

The book reviewer and former Secretary to Anambra State Government, Obaze, commended the author for putting up a very informative and important book that examines the genesis, evolution, prospects and challenges of the UN.

He said: “The book delves broadly into different facets of the conceptualisation, history, theory and practice of peace-building, and particularly the past, present and future role and challenges of the peace-building commission. Its publication coincides propitiously with the 70th anniversary of the United Nations.”

Governor of Delta State, Arthur Ifeanyi Okowa, who was represented by his Chief of Staff, Brisbe, in his goodwill message said: “Peace-building is something we all have to think about, as conflict is a phenomenon we all have to deal with everyday.”

The chief launcher, who is also the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of Ajamy Oil and Gas Limited, said he was happy for two reasons, “ I am launching the book, and it’s a dream come true for me to be here, the author is my friend whom I hold in high esteem, I see him as a scholar.”

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