Institute intensifies campaign against electoral violence

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Abuja- Prof. Oshita Oshita, the Director-General, Institute for and Conflict Resolution (IPCR) said the institute has intensified nationwide campaign against non-violence in the forthcoming general elections, scheduled for March 28 and April 11.

Oshita told the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) on Sunday in Abuja, that dialogue remained the best way to resolve any dispute that may arise from the elections.

He said that the Stakeholders Dialogue for Peaceful 2015 Elections organised for stakeholders by the institute across the country had mapped out strategies to prevent and mitigate electoral violence.

“There is always a price to pay for peace. The price to pay for peace at any time is sacrifice. Somebody must have to give something for peace to reign.

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“If two people want to maintain their positions, there will be problem. For there to be peace, there must be shifting of positions by both parties.

“For Nigeria to remain in peace, we all have roles to play as politicians, parents, traditional and religious leaders, youth, media, civil organisations and the international community,’’ he said.

In a separate interview with NAN, Mr Emmanuel Mamman, Deputy Director, Research and Analysis of the institute said there was no time that is too late for peace and dialogue.

Mamman said that the stakeholders dialogue had been organised close the elections so that the strategies against non-violent elections could be fresh into the elections.

“We have organised this programme all the country but can’t cover all the country at the same time.

“If we gather you as Civil Society Organisations, let your voices be those that serve a positive position, the collective benefits of Nigeria,’’ he said.

The official, however, expressed confidence that if all the stakeholders passed the message from the dialogue to the grassroots, the elections would be devoid of violence.

NAN reports that the dialogue was organised in with the Democratic Governance for Development of the UN Development Programmes. (NAN)