Lets advance real policies to sustain peace – PV Obeng

P. V. Obeng - Senior Government Advisor
P. V. Obeng – Senior Government Advisor

The first national dialogue on sustaining peace, human security and democratic governance was on Thursday held in Accra to enable stakeholders to map out strategies for a collective peacemaking and conflict prevention effort.

The dialogue, which forms part of activities commemorating 50 years of the African Union (AU), is also to develop a framework that would help sustain peace, improve human security and develop a democratic governance system, as well as make terrorism and other illicit activities unattractive.

Mr Paul Victor Obeng, Senior Presidential Advisor at the Presidency, delivering a speech on behalf of the President of the Republic of Ghana said the main purpose of the dialogue was to identify actions necessary for the sustenance of peace, human security and democratic governance for accelerated development.

He said the celebration of 50 years of the AU offers Africans the opportunity to take account of what had transpired over the years to serve as a guide to fashion out policies and programmes that could guarantee a better and promising future for Africans.

Mr Obeng said in recent times Africa has been faced with various threats of terrorism, and it is out of this that the African renaissance had emerged with a conscious re-awakening to the true African identity to be able to discover itself.

“A new era of democracy, free expression and rule of law has become the guiding principle of our collective effort to attain a just society and fight against crime, terrorism, piracy, drug trafficking and all forms of corrupt practices and oppressive rule”.

He said Ghana had had its fair share of woeful; struggles in the past but through good leadership and collective determination it had committed itself to a multi-party democratic path and could describe itself as a peaceful progressive nation, a safe haven and a beacon of hope for the entire continent.

“Even though it has been a long and tortuous journey, we are ever committed to uphold our dignity and uplift the lives or our people from the grips of ignorance, poverty and diseases. We cannot be complacent but invoke our collective responsibility to advance real policies and programmes necessary to always sustain our peace, security and stability”, he added.

Mr Obeng noted that instability in any one African country had ramifications for other countries since the destinies of African countries were tied together, and that Ghana had contributed her quota in helping to build other African countries through numerous peace support operations and exchange of intellectuals and strategic human resources.

He said “sustaining peace, human security and democratic governance while delivering inclusive social, economic and cultural development are indeed the building blocks in our quest for a just society devoid of danger and senseless attacks on innocent citizens.”

He urged stakeholders to give out their best contributions to continue to project Ghana as a land of peace, human security and democratic governance by rooting out injustice, crime, corruption and all forms of nation wrecking activities.

Mr Mark Woyongo, Minister of Defence said the dialogue formed part of sub-themes selected for the year-long celebration of the AU’s 50th anniversary.

He said the African renaissance is very relevant to the continent’s peace, human security and growth, and this had a direct link with Ghana’s national development goals.

He said Ghana’s accelerated development and growth was premised on the realization, acceptance and upholding of the key developmental pillars of peace, human security and democratic governance, and failure to recognize and deal with them constructively could lead to spending huge national resources in dealing with peripheral issues that might recur in different forms.

Mr Woyongo said whilst the security sector is charged with the responsibility of defending the territorial sovereignty of the nation, and they would continue to deliver on their mandate, it was imperative for the entire citizenry to get involved.

“The contribution of poverty in breeding terrorism, drug trafficking and the penetration of small arms and light weapons from conflict zones to relatively peaceful and stable nations such as Ghana, calls for a high level dialogue that would trigger efforts to deliberate and find strategies to deal comprehensively with issues relating to sustaining peace, human security and democratic governance”.

He said the peace and security of Ghana was meaningless, unless it was linked up with peace, human security and democratic governance tenants of the African region.

Mr Woyongo urged participants to dialogue with committed mindsets, devoid of political ideologies so that at the end of the day they would develop a workable document that Ghanaians could collectively own and commit themselves and organizations.

Mr Emmanuel Bombande, Executive Director, WANEP said every country yearned for and appreciated peace but it appeared to be elusive because of the inability to appreciate and practise its principles.

He noted that in order to ensure that the current peace enjoyed in Ghana was sustained, it was important for Ghanaians to continuously commit themselves through dialogue.

He said it was important to appreciate that dialogue had a peace trust on human security for accelerated development, saying “it is important to make dialogue a part of our political culture and let it generate into the way we discuss national issues”.

Mr Bombande said human security provides a platform for promoting a people centered approach to addressing peace in the country, adding that, peace and human security could be sustained through dialogue.

Source: GNA

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