Nigeria President-elect, Bola Ahmed Tinubu has been advised to prioritise national reconciliation so as to douse the tension in the country.
The Country Director of International Alert, Paul Nyulaku, gave the advice at the launch of a National Stability Dialogue Initiative, yesterday in Abuja, and titled: ‘Promoting Post-election Stability, Justice and Gender Inclusion.’
Representatives of National Orientation Agency, (NOA), Office for Strategic Preparedness and Resilience, (OSPRE) and National Early Warning Centre were in attendance at the occasion.
The peace building organisation, pointed out that what was needed in the country right now is dialogue.
He said: “Polarization between social groups is a growing challenge in Nigeria. The incoming government must prioritise national reconciliation and seek to build broad support for democratic institutions and non-violent conflict resolution.
“By promoting locally owned, women-led advocacy work, we hope the National Stability Dialogue project can help Nigeria along the path to a peaceful and prosperous future.”
Chairman of the occasion and former Chief of Defense Staff (CDS), Gen. Martin Luther-Agwai (rtd), said for effective dialogue, parties involved must ensure that they speak in a non-partisan manner.
Agwai added that woman should be invited to dialogue because they also bear the brunt of conflicts.
“One thing that really fascinated me today is the issue of dialogue. It is not negotiation.
“It is a dialogue. I think that is what we really need in our country today. We need to dialogue with each other.
“We need to talk in a non-partisan way and we need to talk in a neutrality of what is happening, see it as it is and say it as it is.
“I thank the International Alert for making this alert that we come to discuss.
“I am happy with what has been said. Because it is only when we identify what is wrong that we can ratify it.
“At the end, I think what we will get is trust. And when there is dialogue there will be trust, and when there is trust there will be progress and development.
“What I have found that will bring peace in the little experience I have while serving as Deputy Force Commander in Sierra Leone and serving as Force Commander in Dafoe having to be the first IPO in the world in this issue of dialogue is the gender issue.
“We have neglected our mothers for too long. They are the ones that carry us for 9 months before we come to the world.
“We have to bring them to the table. And I am glad that International Alert is doing so so that we can collectively clap with our two hands which means that our fathers, our mothers are together,” he said.