The resurgence of attacks by cult groups and the attacks that are easily attributed to farmer-herder conflicts in all local governments in Plateau State has been described as a “worrying trend” despite the deliberate efforts for the return of peace in the state.
This was contained in the opening remarks delivered by the Director General of the Peace Agency, Mr. Joseph Lengmang as the Agency in collaboration with GIZ hosted the June edition of the Plateau State Peace Architectural Forum (P-PAF) on Monday 28th June 2021 in Jos Plateau.
Mr Lengmang blamed the attacks on saboteurs gaining from the conflicts as such attacks pose fresh threats to peace building,
“For us, while we celebrate the return of peace, this is a stack reminder of the challenges that we face. It is not yet Uhuru regardless of all that we have accomplished over the years,” he said.
“There are people who are determined and resolute as you are working to build peace, they are also working to bring down the whole roof upon everybody. The criminals are there, the war merchants are there,” he said.
However, the Peace Agency according to Lengmang is determined to sustain efforts at reconciling communities in the conflict ridden State.
“It behooves on us, the genuine peace makers to double our efforts to work in concert with one another to make sure we break the Conflict trap and to reverse this ugly trend,” Lengmang said.
The Peace architecture forum saw stakeholders including security agencies, religious leaders, community leaders and civil societies deliberating on issues for solutions, toward preventing violence especially with the farming season ushering clashes between predominantly native farmers and nomadic herders within various communities.
The forum which started last month is expected to last through the year with active stakeholders in the peace process in plateau state.
The Plateau Peace Building Agency (PPBA) is an institutional framework established by law in response to the challenges of peace and security in the state. Their mandate is to promote the culture of peace and harmonious coexistence, among the various ethnoreligious divides on the Plateau.