TEXT OF A PRESS STATEMENT ON THE OCCASION OF THE ROAD WALK IN COMMEMORATION OF THE INTERNATIONAL DAY OF PEACE, TODAY THURSDAY 21 SEPTEMBER, 2017 IN LAGOS STATE, NIGERIA.
LET PEACE REIGN IN NIGERIA
My lords spiritual and temporal, compatriots, gentlemen of the press, ladies and gentlemen, it gives me great joy and satisfaction on behalf of Immaculate Initiative for Peace (IIP) to welcome you all to this great occasion of the road walk in commemoration of the International Day of Peace today, 21 September, 2017 which is a day dedicated by the United Nations globally for strengthening the ideals of peace both within and among Nations and people’s
The International Day of Peace was declared in 1981 by a resolution of the United Nations General Assembly to coincide with its opening session which holds annually on every third Tuesday of September. It is established as an annual day or non violence and ceasefire.
The motto for this year is titled “Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity” which aims to highlight the importance of all segments of society to work together for peace.
In tandem with the United Nations objectives, the motto of the Federal Republic of Nigeria is stated as Unity and Faith, Peace and Progress. (Section 15 (1) of the constitution of the Federal Republic of Nigeria, 2011).
What is Peace? Peace has been variously defined by scholars in the academics, but for our purpose today and always, we will adopt the definition of Peace to mean, the resolution of conflict through non violence.
The indispensability of Peace to social harmony, unity and development cannot be over-emphasized. However, it is unfortunate that today both locally and internationally, Peace has eluded human lives because it has been taken for granted.
In our country today, if there is one commodity that is in hot demand in the homes, schools, markets, meetings, religious houses of worship and the society at large, it is Peace.
Peace is critical to human progress and advancement for harmonious co-existence. Therefore, it becomes imperative at this time in our national life to admonish, sensitize, educate and sermonize to Nigerians from the East to the West, South to the North, Christians, Muslims, Traditional Religions worshippers, young and old, men and women, to give peace a chance in our engagements with one another.
It must be recognized that in the course of our exchanges, conflicts cannot but occur because of differences in perspectives and when and where this occurs, we must be conscious of the fact that as human beings bestowed with the higher sense of reasoning above lower animals, the only way to resolve those conflicts should be by non violent methods.
We threaten human existence when we resort to self help in resolving conflicts and this we condemn in it’s entirety and call on us all, to imbibe the ideals of peace at all times and in all circumstances.
Thus, we must also admonish those at the helm of our affairs at various levels of authority to strive despite the challenges, to dispense justice to all without fear or favour in order to engender enduring Peace.
As we commemorate this great day of 21 September every year dedicated to promoting the ideals of Peace globally by the UN, we call on Nigerians across all the divides, most especially the Youths to embrace Peace as a way of life and denounce violence in any form.
In line with the theme for this year’s celebration, we call on all Nigerians to continue to keep faith with democracy and the governments at all levels by actively playing our part “Together for Peace: Respect, Safety and Dignity” towards ensuring that peace reigns in Nigeria in particular and the world at large.
Thank you for joining us in this walk and listening.
God bless the Federal Republic of Nigeria.
Dada Bankole. Nelson Ekujumi
Director General. Deputy Director General
NB: The walk took place from Ikeja underbridge in Ikeja local government council area of Lagos and had in attendance members of Immaculate Initiative for Peace led by the Director General Comrade Bankole Dada, Nelson Ekujumi, the assistant director of the National Orientation Agency (NOA), nollywood star Mr. Ayo Badmus, Christian cleric Prophet Dr. E. A. Godwin, Islamic religious leaders, members of the NURTW, the media, security agencies, etc. The walk took off from Ikeja underbridge through Obafemi Awolowo way, Ikeja to the Lagos State House of Assembly, Alausa, Ikeja where they were received and addressed by the Chairman, House Committee on Information, strategy and security, Hon. Tunde Braimoh, Hon. Oluwa and Hon Funmilayo Tejuoso after the presentation of the letter by the group commemorating the international Day of Peace.
Hon. Tunde Braimoh on behalf of the Lagos State House of Assembly under the able leadership of Rt. Hon. Speaker Mudashiru Obasa appreciated the peaceful conduct and disposition of the team in calling on Nigerians to allow peace reign notwithstanding the various agitations in the country and re-echoed the need for Nigerians to imbibe the spirit of submitting their grievances to due process of the law for amicable resolution in the interest of harmonious co-existence.
Hon. Tunde Braimoh commended the United Nations declaration of September 21 every year as the International Day of Peace and prayed for peace to reign in Nigeria in particular and the world in general.
The team also delivered similar letter of commemoration of the International Day of Peace to the office of the governor of Lagos State, Mr. Akinwunmi Ambode for onward transmission to President Muhammadu Buhari, the President and Commander in Chief of the armed forces of the Federal Republic of Nigeria.