ABUJA – The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC) on Monday said no fewer than 300 officers were receiving training on alternative dispute resolution. Dr Ade Abolurin, the Commandant-General, NSCDC, made this known at the opening of a training with the theme: “Principles and Practice of Alternative Dispute Resolution” at the Corps Academy in Abuja. The 5-day training organised by the corps is in collaboration with the Institute for Peace and Conflict Resolution and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP). Abolurin said that the officers were drawn from various parts of the country to learn the technique of conflict resolution through dialogue. He said that the security challenges facing Nigeria should not be termed “war” as it was a result of misunderstanding that could be resolved through mediation. The Commandant-General noted that the security situation in the North-East of Nigeria had not yet degenerated into a war. According to him, since the situation had not affected a large number of the populace hence it could be curtailed through cooperation of every citizen, institutions and security agencies. He said that the country would achieve sustainable development if the citizenry saw one another as one without discrimination of tribe or religion. Abolurin therefore called on the public, institutions and security agencies to adopt dialogue in resolving conflicts to enable the country achieve peace. Also, retired Col. Sambo Dasuki, the National Security Adviser (NSA), said peace efforts should be taken to the grassroots where most conflict occurred. Dasuki, who was represented at the ceremony by Dr Fatima Akilu, emphasised the need to develop a peace strategy founded on co-operation with the public and civil society. “We need to find out why there is so much conflict in the country and device new ways of resolving these conflicts. “We cannot allow our differences to define who we are hence we have a new chance to rebuild our nation,” Dasuki said. Also speaking, the Director-General, National Orientation Agency, Mr Mike Omeri, described the training as a timely contribution to various efforts at restoring sustainable peace in the country. He noted that only the exhibition of patriotism by Nigerians could solve the present security challenges in the country. Omeri called on Nigerians to ignore leaders that championed conflicts in the country and begin to dialogue with each other on ways to achieve lasting peace. “Patriotism and love of country is the foundation to peace and progress. When you love your country, you will do everything possible to promote and protect it.
“The war against terrorism can only be won through the collective will, cooperation and support of all Nigerians irrespective of their political, religious and ethnic differences” he said.
Mr Bernardo Cocco, the Deputy Country Director (Programme), UNDP, said with the body’s support, the Peace and Conflict Resolution Unit of the corps had resolved over 1,328 disputes in 2013.
He said this was against 763 cases resolved by the unit between 2010 and 2013.
According to him, the UNDP also provided support to strengthen the capacity of the unit through the technical training programme. (NAN)