Daily Trust

Mus­lim, Chris­tian women list ways of re­solv­ing Benue, Taraba eth­nic cri­sis

- By Ab­bas Ji­moh Sexism · Women's Rights · Society · Discrimination · Feminism · Politics · Human Rights · Social Movements · Northern Ireland Assembly

Mus­lims and Chris­tian women lead­ers have called for ad­e­quate representa­tion of women in de­ci­sion-mak­ing and pol­icy for­mu­la­tion, as part of mea­sures to re­solve the age­long eth­nic con­flicts in Benue and Taraba states.

This is con­tained in the com­mu­nique of a three­day Women In­ter­state Peace­build­ing Ini­tia­tive (WIPI) Con­fer­ence, with the theme: “Women are Key to Peace” or­gan­ised by the Foun­da­tion for Peace, Hope and Con­flict Man­age­ment (FPHCM) in Abuja.

It was jointly signed by Dr. Maryam Yusuf Ma­gaji, Chair­per­son; Chief (Mrs.) Rhoda N. Tor-Ag­bidye, Sec­re­tary and mem­bers com­pris­ing Mrs. Doom Bib­iana Abakume, Mrs. Ju­liana D. Angye and Rev. Fr. Prof. An­thony I.


They noted that women are pro­por­tion­ally af­fected by vi­o­lent con­flict sit­u­a­tions and yet largely ex­cluded from ne­go­ti­at­ing peace.

Ac­cord­ing to them, in to­day’s con­tem­po­rary so­ci­ety, women con­tinue to be ex­cluded from of­fi­cial ef­forts to bring peace to con­flict-af­fected com­mu­ni­ties and their con­tri­bu­tion to broader peace­build­ing of­ten goes un­recog­nised de­spite in­ter­na­tional pol­icy de­vel­op­ment.

They noted that there was a marked de­cline in cul­tural and morals val­ues in the ed­u­ca­tional, po­lit­i­cal and so­cial sec­tors within the com­mu­ni­ties and that the in­sti­tu­tion­alised struc­tures that mon­i­tor and re­port sus­pi­cious moves and ques­tion­able char­ac­ters in the so­ci­ety are in­ef­fec­tive.

“There are fi­nan­cial con­straints re­sult­ing from un­der­util­i­sa­tion of funds meant for se­cu­rity per­son­nel. There is a poor pres­ence of lo­cal and in­ter­na­tional Civil So­ci­ety Or­ga­ni­za­tions (CSOs) work­ing in the area of peace­build­ing within Taraba and Benue states. Stereo­typ­ing and hate speeches by po­lit­i­cal, re­li­gious and com­mu­nity lead­ers in­sti­gate cri­sis in the so­ci­ety.

“There is a need to em­pha­sise teach­ings that strengthen and pro­mote the prac­tice of so­cial norms and cul­tural val­ues among chil­dren and youths in our so­ci­eties. Women and youths should be equipped with vo­ca­tional and en­trepreneur­ship skills in or­der to pro­mote self-re­liance and sus­tain­abil­ity,” they said.

They also said that the killings of per­sons and de­struc­tion of prop­erty has to stop and that all dis­placed per­sons should be rein­te­grated back to their var­i­ous com­mu­ni­ties.

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