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‘Why we celebrated International Peace Day’ – Precious Ajunwa

Peace

In commemoration of 2017 International Peace Day, annually observed on 21st September, Galaxy4Peace – a  youth-focused peacebuilding organization hosted the yearly Sweat4Peace project for the fourth edition. 
The event engaged youths using sporting activities to celebrate this global day with the theme “Together for Peace, Respect, Safety and Dignity for All.
Not only did the event attract youths from every area in Lagos State, including celebrities as Koffi Idowu, Bryan Okwara, Chuck Anyaduba, Oghenekaro Itene , in addition the Mr Soremekun, the National Information Officer of the United Nations Information Center to this peace day event that took place at Federal College of Education, Akoka Lagos but this year’s event was executed concurrently in Abuja and Port Harcourt on same Saturday, September 16, 2017.

ENCOMIUM Weekly was at the event to hear from the horses’ mouth and from some dignitaries present.

 

What informed the programme?

Being part of a concerned group of individuals lending their voices in the call for global peace, there arose a need to put Nigeria on the global map of countries committed to this cause. In addition, after taking a closer look at what is happening around us: incessant ethno-religious conflicts, intra community and inter-state conflicts, also factoring in that Nigeria is ranked 149 out of 163 countries in the 2017 Global Peace Index Report, there is no better time to bring people together and enjoined them to promote peace than now.

Have you been hosting such programmes before?

Yes, 2017 Sweat4Peace is the fourth edition and we are glad with the records we have achieved so far. There are also several other projects we engage in to help build a violence-free generation.

Is your programme an NGO?

Absolutely! Galaxy4Peace is a youth focused, women-led peace building organization, championing a violent-free generation by adopting the primary approach of teaching Peace Education in Nigerian Schools and conducting several capacity building trainings on conflict prevention and resolution.

Why do you choose to use a sporting way to celebrate international Peace Day?

Variety is the spice of life like they always say. We have tied Sweat4Peace to a peace walk over the past years, apart from corporate companies getting involved through investment in peace building and considering sports is a veritable tool for development, sports is one way to attract not only young people but people across all ages to come hear the gospel of peace.

What do you aim to achieve?

To sustain an environment branded by peaceful co-existence among: tribes, states, regions, communities, and political group.
In addition, to increase the responsiveness of the general populace especially the (youths) on peace building, peace education and conflict management programs aimed at the definitive goal of building sustainable peace for growth and sustainable development in Nigeria.

Is it a yearly programme?

Yes Sweat4Peace event is an annual programme having been tied to the period when the global community mark International Peace Day. However, investment into peace building projects by the corporate bodies which leave them Sweating for Peace through partnership, support and donations can come in at any time of the year.

What informed you to celebrate International Peace Day?

As a youth focused peace building organization – there is no better time to inspire young people to demonstrate the power that lies in them, in changing the narrative attributed to young people from being conflict actors, but now to peace actors through a national project such as Sweat4Peace.

 

Chuks Anyaduba, Road Safety Activist and Founder of Safecross Campaign.

How would you choose to identify the program?

It is a good initiative, if you look at the world right now, there is no peace. Alot of agitations, terrorist, threats and what have you. so this message of peace is really essential in making the world a good place for us all. This program is also in line with the sustainable development goals of the United Nation. Goal 16 to be precise.

What is your word of encouragement to the youth?

I implore the youth to not just be peaceful, they should also preach the message of peace especially taking into cognizance the situation of Nigeria today. A peaceful Nation breeds economic growth, attracts investment and all. Peace is necessary for us all to co-exist regardless of ethnic differences.

 

My name is koffi Idowu-Nuel aka Koffi’Tha Guru’

How would you choose to identify the program?

We need more propagation of peace. This is a perfect example of what we should do constantly to remind one another that we are all one. We breath the same, bleed the same and sweat the same.

What is your word of encouragement to the youth?

Stay focused. Love. Avoid politicians who intend to use you for dangerous moves. Follow my P-principle (As written in my book “Beauty of The Beast).

Can you introduce yourself?

My name is Precious Ajunwa, founder of Galaxy4Peace and the convener of Sweat4Peace. Born and bred in Nigeria, I am a professional peace advocate with over 5 years experience, leading corporate training on: workplace Conflict Management, Communication and Customer Relations, also creating and leading youth-focused projects for development.

– Shukurat Alimi for encomium.ng

 

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