Gov. Nasir El-Rufa’i of Kaduna State, on Wednesday, says there is a need for the inclusion of more women in decision making to prevent violent conflicts in the country.
The Governor made the call in Kaduna at a meditation workshop for peacebuilding organised by Farmers and Herdsmen Initiative for Peace and Development in Africa. NAN reports that the workshop, which drew participants from African countries, focused on the use of mediation and other non-violent approaches in promoting peace across the continent.
He said that the socio-political marginalization of youth and women, especially in the mediation of conflicts across the world, must stop, adding that “we need more women in decision making roles to prevent and build resilience to violent conflicts.”
According to him, his administration has deliberately appointed competent women and youth into senior and very visible government positions to reflect a commitment to gender and social inclusion and inspire the young ones to realize their full potentials.
“We have also utilized the mediation and peace building competence of our women to improve security in our communities.”
He asked the participants “belonging to the network of community voices for peace and pluralism” to find commonalities and build relationships that will lead to preventing conflicts and mediating in their countries.
According to him, a lot of people talk about the need to make a difference and make a change, yet what the African continent needs more urgently are leaders willing to step out of conformity and do things differently.
“In this room are women professionals with expertise in a leading organisation, teaching in universities and working among communities.
“This makes you ideal for the task of creating a reference framework from which to create an inclusive culture and practice of women, skilled in conflict prevention,” he said. El-Rufai said that the Kaduna state peace commission, headed by a woman, was established to promote peacebuilding and peaceful coexistence.
The governor appealed for the engagement of women groups in the state and Nigeria to enhance their capability in peacebuilding.