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The African Heritage Institution (AfriHeritage) is worried that Nigeria is struggling to provide the basic needs of its people after 60 years of independence.
The think-tank and research institute complained about the situation at a discourse held in collaboration with the Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution (IPCR) of the Ministry of Foreign Affairs.
The parley was convened to deliberate on the way forward amid the national and human security challenges.
Prof. Ufo Okeke-Uzodike, AfriHeritage Director regretted that average Nigerians are consistently afraid of security uncertainties.
He observed that while parents and children worry about safety at the markets, schools and places of worship, farmers worry about bandits as they attend to their farms or livestock.
Okeke-Uzodike said the challenges persist because Nigeria remains a country of culturally disparate and unintegrated people who are still finding it difficult to work together to solve common problems.
“Sadly, effective national and human security usually require meaningful and inclusive participation and ownership by citizens”, he said.
IPCR Director-General, Bakut Tswah Bakut, represented by Andy Nkemneme, Deputy Director, Conflict Prevention and Resolution, emphasized the need for all to work together in harmony to achieve and maintain peace.
He declared that banditry had become one of the biggest threats to peace and security in Nigeria.
Nkemneme assured the IPCR would continue to strengthen the adoption of peace and conflict resolution mechanisms in the country and across Africa.
Chukwumemeka Eze, Director, African Network for Peace Building in Accra, called for the re-examination of the existing strategies to mitigate the threat of banditry, identify the gaps and chart a new pathway towards sustainable peace.
“I want to state emphatically that armed banditry is not a problem that will be solved through the barrel of a gun.
“There is the need to revitalize activities that promote social inclusion and human security, which will provide prospects for transformative changes, peace and development in Nigeria”.
Noting that every environment has its peculiarities, Eze stressed that the myriads of social cleavages can only be tackled if the government and the people map out an efficient.