The Minister of the Interior, Mr Kwesi Ahwoi, has called on civil society groups and stakeholders in governance to learn about Ghana’s peaceful resolution of the election dispute in court.
He said peace and security should no longer be the preserve of governments but the collective responsibility of all individuals.
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Mr Ahwoi was addressing participants at the opening session of a three-week intensive training session of the West African Peace-building Institute (WAPI) at the Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) in Accra yesterday.
“In recent times, Africa has been confronted with severe peace and security challenges that have affected the socio–economic development of the continent,” he said, and stressed the need for a paradigm shift towards conflict prevention and infrastructure development.
Mr Ahwoi said it was in line with that that Ghana had taken the lead to establish a National Peace Council mandated to raise awareness of the use of non-violent strategies to conflict prevention and resolution.
He commended civil society groups in the country for consistently contributing to the democratic governance of the country, despite the challenges confronting them.
He further commended the West African Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP) and the KAIPTC for creating a unique platform for learning, experience sharing and cultural exchange over the past 12 years.
“I would like to encourage all participants to take this training seriously, as it is a milestone in how you influence your society back home in the area of peace, security and democratic governance,” he said.
The Executive Director of WANEP, Mr Emmanuel Bombande, called for stakeholders’ assistance to support peace-building efforts and create the environment for dialogue.
He said appealing for peace was the easiest thing to do, but working for peace required more effort, hence the need to build human resource capacity in that direction.
That, he said, would help communities own the process of finding mutually acceptable outcomes to bridge the divide of hatred, reconcile and coexist peacefully, even where disagreements persisted.
The three-week intensive training would expose the 55 participants to topics such as introduction to peacekeeping concept and theory, dialogue and mediation, human security and development, early warning signs, gender and peace-building.
By Fred Dzakpata/Daily Graphic/Ghana