The Co-Chair of Interfaith Dialogue Peace Forum (IDFP), Bishop Sunday Onuoha, has said that Nigeria’s protracted insecurity, socio-economic and political challenges is being worsened by poverty in the north and perceived marginalisation in south parts of the country.
Bishop Onuoha said this on Wednesday in Abuja at the 9th Annual Humanitarian Public Lecture and graduation ceremony of the 2021 Trained Professional Humanitarians across Nigeria, organised by the Institute of Humanitarian Studies and Social Development (IHSSD) with the theme, “Promoting the Culture of Humanitarianism and Volunteering; Imperative for National Development”.
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He said that insecurity in the country were man-made and should be tackle with human elements which Nigeria is capable of.
“When we talk about what is happening in the North and the crises going on across the South, they are man-made. The situation in the Northeast has not been settled, but we are pretending as though we have settled the matter.
“When you go to various communities and see the level of suffering and pain the people are facing, and compare that with the level of affluence in our society and the resources we are wasting in living luxurious lives that are not necessary, you will weep.
“We must be able to reach out to the people and give them a sense of smile. If not, we are building a society where there will be anger from young people who feel marginalized, neglected and left out there with no one caring for them. And so, they are fighting the society. This is a time for us to look out for those that have been neglected and care for them or else we will continue to have a society where nobody is safe,” Onuoha said.
Also speaking, the Secretary to Government of the Federation (SGF), Mr. Boss Mustapha, represented by Director, Public Affairs Department OSGF, Mrs. Veronica Agugu, said Nigeria was going through turbulent times, and that leaders at all levels have important roles to play in tackling the nation’s challenges, especially from a humanitarian perspective.
“It is not only when you (leaders) need to go in for an election that you mobilize people to come under the sun to vote for you. But once elected, you sit in your office and you don’t remember them at the end of the day,” he said.
On his part, the President, Institute of Humanitarian Studies and Social Development, Adamu Babangida Ibrahim, said, “Within the 11 years of our existence, the institute has remained consistent in the capacity building of individual humanitarians, NGOs and Government MDAs, thus ensuring efficiency in their humanitarian response and programs, with over 5000 persons trained so far.”
Highlights of the event include conferment of distinguished humanitarian fellowship award to Bishop Onuoah; and fellowship induction and graduation of 200 persons who have been trained in humanitarian service including staff of government across the MDAs.