Nigeria’s Peace Building Agency (PPBA), in northcentral part of Plateau state is holding a 3-day training program on conflict mediation and dialogue.
With support from the United Kingdom’s Department for Development, (DFID), the workshop targeted at partners and other sensitive stakeholders is aimed at preventing violent conflicts during the February 16th and 2nd March polls respectively.
The training which is to build the capacity of the PPBA workers for effective conflict prevention, also seeks to boost staff to design, facilitate, monitor and evaluate dialogue and mediation processes with a view to systematically engage conflict towards minimizing the potential of violence.
In a speech to herald the opening of the workshop, the Director General, Peace Building Agency, Mr Joseph Lengmang said the gathering is focused on dictating early warning signs with the aim of nipping them in the bud before it escalates.
Lengmang said the Agency has deployed conflict prevision technical measures to ensure that the country remains violent free before and after the polls.
“To carry out our mandate, we shall be very proactive; we cannot afford the luxury of being reactionary.
“Our mandate is to seek out the issues and deal with them at the latent stages with the aim of tackling them before they escalate into violent conflicts”, he said.
Another key note speaker at the training, Commissioner for Science and Technology, Mr. Dan Manjang, said the training couldn’t have come at a better time than now when the country is getting set to have another round of democratic transition, adding that the Peace Agency was established purposely to address issues that will lead to electoral violence during electioneering.
He said with the pedigree of the Agency he has no doubt that the forthcoming elections will be hitch free considering the fact that the PPBA has done a lot to prevent pre and post-election violence.
Participants however at the end of the workshop are expected to go into the trenches to detect early warning signs with the hope to arrest and nip them in the bud.
Our correspondent reports that the PPBA was established by an act of legislation in February 2016 with a primary mandate of preventing violent conflicts and consolidating on the peace currently being enjoyed on the hitherto conflict ridden State.