Nasarawa State Governor, Abdullahi Sule said that the multifaceted approach of President Muhammadu Buhari in fighting insecurity would reduce the rate of poverty unemployment, and would ensure lasting peace in the country.
Governor Sule, who was speaking in Lafia during a peacebuilding meeting, organized in collaboration with the Middle Belt Brain Trust (MBBT) and the Institute for Integrated Transitions (IFIT), said, his administration would continue to welcome initiatives that will assist towards consolidating the collective commitment to promoting peaceful co-existence, for socio-economic development of the society.
According to the Sule, peace, and security is a collective responsibility for all, hence Nigerians must endeavour to come together in unison to fight crimes and criminality, for the collective good of all.
He, therefore, identified poverty and unemployment as major factors responsible for insecurity in the country, stressing that, the launch of poverty reduction and growth strategy, shows that President Buhari, was not only talking about peace but also poverty reduction.
The governor noted the peacebuilding meeting is in tandem with the collective commitment to bring lasting solutions to security challenges bordering the North-central zone, in line with the posture of President Buhari, to restore permanent peace across the country.
According to him, the North Central zone of the country is faced with a lot of security challenges, ranging from conflict between farmers and herdsmen, armed robbery, kidnapping and abduction, murder, communal clashes, among other sundry crimes.
“We, all, must encourage and support the efforts of our security agencies towards securing our environment for socio-economic activities to prosper,” he stated.
Sule then commended organizers of the peacebuilding process, the MBBT, and IFIT, for the laudable initiative, aimed at fashioning ways of addressing security challenges through reconciliation in the crisis-ridden states.
He expressed hope that the peace-building process would address the ugly phenomenon in the bid to avert the likely breakdown of law and order in the region.
Thomas Bimba Jr., the country coordinator for IFIT, said, the acceptance to host the event by Governor Sule is a reflection of the great efforts by the leadership and people of Nasarawa in regards to peaceful coexistence in the state.
On his part, chairman of the MBBT and former chief of army staff, Gen. M. L Agwai (rtd), disclosed that the group’s mission is to build social cohesion by working together to create locally-driven social covenants to be led by the people.
The former chief of defense staff explained that the MBBT, brings together 15 Middle Belt specialists, in areas such as inter-religious dialogue, mediation, community development, and justice reform, drawn from Nasarawa, Benue, Plateau, Taraba, and the Kaduna States.
The event was attended by top government functionaries, traditional rulers, as well as members of civil society organizations.