**As Youths Troops Out For Peace Walk
LOKOJA – Youths in their thousands on Monday took a peace walk across some communities in Kogi State to commemorate the 2020 International Day of Peace.
The peace -walk was organised by the ActionAid Nigeria, Participation Initiative for Behavioural Change in Development, PIBCID, and the state government held in 12 communities of the state with the global theme ‘Shaping Peace Together”.
Speaking in Lokoja, the state capital, PIBCID State Director, Sadiq Halima said this year Global Peace Day was marked to emphasize the need for people to be devoted to strengthening the ideals of peace and to emphasis peaceful coexistence by spreading messages of unity, hope and empathy.
Halima said only under an atmosphere of peace will the state or country experience development, said peace remained a panacea for growth and progress.
She said, “The one-day annual peace walk is part of the implementation of the System and Structure Strengthening Approach Against Radicalization to Violent Extremism Project (SARVE II).
“The project is aimed to reduce the vulnerability of at-risk young men and women to conflict and radicalization, and its being implemented in 12 LGAs in Kogi states.
“One of the most vulnerable groups to violent extremism are young persons. As a way of shaping peace together in Kogi state, we are using this opportunity to call for the implementation of the Kogi Youth Development Commission Law which will go a long way in reducing the vulnerability of youths to social vices and enhanceing development.
“The provisions of the law upholds entrepreneurship opportunities as a strategy for keeping young men and women in Kogi State engaged and away from the influence of extremist groups. Hence our call to the Governor of Kogi State for the speedy implementation of the Law, which was signed since April 2019.”
Halima said the peace walk offered an opportunity for indigens of Kogi to be reminded of their roles in peace building while also promoting social cohesion through engagement and sharing of messages of peace. End.