Nonviolence fosters understanding, reconciliation – Rev. Hayab

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Rev. John Hayab, the Country Director of Global Peace Foundation Nigeria (GPFN), on Thursday advocated for nonviolent approach in settling issues.
He said this was necessary in promoting understanding and reconciliation among the diverse groups in Nigeria.
Hayab gave the advice during the commemoration of the International Day of Nonviolence, held in Kaduna
“Nonviolence is a powerful force that when embraced, creates a ripple effect, positively influencing individuals, communities and entire nations,” the GPFN country director said.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the one day event was organised in collaboration with an NGO, Development and Peace Initiative.
“Nonviolence is not a passive stance, it is an active force capable of healing wounds, mending divides and constructing societies rooted in genuine cohesion,” he added.
Quoting Mahatma Gandhi’s who said: “You must be the change you want to see in the world,” Hayab said it was the collective responsibility of all to foster a culture of peace.
The Country director said the collective vision of GPFN is hinged on promoting One Family Under God.
“It is a call to unity, transcending boundaries of religion, ethnicity, and nationality.
“A recognition of our shared humanity, bound together by common principles and values that form the foundation for lasting peace.”
He disclosed that in the spirit of nonviolence, the GPFN has been actively intervening in regions that have experienced conflicts, aiming to promote peace and social cohesion.
“Our efforts extend to diverse groups in Kaduna, Zamfara, Niger, Plateau, Rivers, and the Federal Capital Territory Abuja.
“The benefits of nonviolence are profound and far-reaching.
“It is not merely about conflict resolution but about building a sustainable foundation for enduring peace.”
He identified some specific ways to incorporate nonviolence into daily actions.
These he said included, kindness, compassion, positive and inclusive environment, peaceful conflict resolution, advocacy for Justice and equality, support for nonviolence initiatives, education, awareness and community involvement, among others.
He said incorporating these practices into people’s daily lives, will contribute to the broader movement of fostering a world characterized by empathy, understanding, and nonviolence.
“As we celebrate today in Kaduna, let us not forget that this celebration echoes globally, and Nigerians should be catalysts for reflection, commitment, and action.
“Let us carry with us the spirit of nonviolence, committing ourselves to actively contribute to a more peaceful and harmonious world, one where the vision of One Family Under God becomes a lived reality,” Hayab said.
The Northern Coordinator of GPFN, Sheik Haliru Maraya , stressed the importance of living according to the teachings of prophets and holy books to eliminate violence from society.
Also, a Superintendent of Police, Mr Larry Michael, who represented the Kaduna State Police Command, expressed concern about rising crime rate, and emphasized the need for community policing, and collaboration with security agencies.
“The slogan ‘if you see something, say something, and do something’, underscores the shared responsibility for peace and security, with the assurance that the Nigerian police is actively working to curb violence in the  society,” he said.
NAN report that the event featured peace talks, a poem playlet and other activities by students from various secondary schools in Kaduna.

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