By Hassana Yakubu
Kaduna, Oct.19, 2020 The wife of Kaduna State Governor, Hajiya Hadiza El-Rufai, on Monday, inaugurated a 60-member Women Peace Council to deepen peace building process in four local government areas of the state.
Naija247news reports that the peace council was also to sustain conflict prevention including early warning and response in the areas.
Mrs El- Rufai who inaugurated the women council in Kaduna, noted that the state has been having challenges on issues of peace and charged the women to change the narrative.
She said women participation in peace building was missing in the past, and expressed happiness in the involvement of the women in the search for enduring peace in the state.
The council is saddled with the responsibility of conflicts prevention, early warning and peace building across four local government areas of the state.
Mrs Priscilla Ankut, Executive Chairperson, Kaduna Peace Commission said the programme was in collaboration with Kaduna state government, USAID and Mercy Corps to support community initiative for peace.
Ankut said the 60 women were drawn from four local government areas of Kachia, Zaria, Kaduna North and Kajuru.
She said the initiative was to provide a platform for women to add their voices and expertise to sustain and consolidate peace in the state.
She encouraged the women to work diligently in their communities and continue advocating for peace, dialogue and mediation to prevent conflicts.
“We expect that the peace you will be helping us promote will transcend not only your homes, but also transform communities and the state at large, so that we can begin to witness mass movement for peace in the state,” she said.
Mrs Amina Bello, Program Officer, Mercy Corps said women play very critical role in peace building, and noted that the women peace council was initiated to champion peace in communities.
She emphasised the need for more women participation in peace building, in order to bring about lasting peace in the state.
Mr Sanni Sulaiman, Deputy Chief of Party, Mercy Corps said the peace building council is a platform of women of influence from various communities and religious background to champion peace, development and stability in their communities.
Sulaiman said USAID is supporting the community initiative to promote peace programmes through a consortium led by Mercy Corps .
According to him, the program is committed to amplifying the voices of women and addressing gender gap in conflicts prevention management and peace building.
He said this is being done “through capacity development and support for women led peace initiatives and enactment of women networks to build a movement for strategic conflict prevention and response.”