By Olajide Idowu
The Nigeria Security and Civil Defence Corps (NSCDC), in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) and the Osun government, have organised a week-long training on conflict prevention for security agents and other stakeholders in Osun.
The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the workshop, tagged: ‘Early Warning and Early Response (EWER) and Conflict Prevention for Communities and Security Providers’, which started on Nov. 24 at Iloko-Ijesa, was rounded off on Saturday.
NAN also reports that the workshop had traditional rulers, personnel of the Nigerian Police Force, Department of State Security and the Nigerian Army as well as representatives of civil society organisations, state government and the media in attendance.
Speaking at the occasion, Mr David Ojelabi, the Programme Facilitator and Head of Peace and Conflict Management, NSCDC, Abuja, said that the programme was put together to train participants on conflict signs detection and prevention.
Ojelabi, who also represented the NSCDC Commandant- General, Abdullahi Mohammadu, said the workshop was also aimed at bridging the gap between security agencies and the communities.
“The programme was put together to bridge the dichotomy that had been existing among the critical agencies.
“It tends to address security issues, conflict prevention, how to detect and gather early warning signs and how to report them to the appropriate authorities.
“The participants were made to understand that they all have stakes and are key players in the issue of conflict prevention, detecting conflicts early signs and early response.
“It is the responsibility of anyone who receives the early warning signs report to respond appropriately and timely so as to nip in the bud the identified conflict before it snowballs into violence.
“The security agents have learnt how to relate with ourselves and the civilians in the name of civil-military relation.
“Since security is everybody’s business, all hands must, therefore, be on deck for us for us to get the desired results,” he said.
Ojelabi also said that the programme would serve as a proactive measure to address the issue of conflict in the society, as this will give the opportunity to address issues before they get out of hands.
In his address, Gov. Gboyega Oyetola, who was represented by the state Commissioner for Economic Planning and Budget, Mr Yinusa Olalekan, commended the UNDP for its support to the state.
While also expressing appreciation to the NSCDC for choosing the state for the training, he urged participants to apply all they had learnt in their various places of work and communities.
The trainers and lecturers at the programme, Messrs Falade Olutoyin, Faleti Stephen and Emmanuel Mamma took participants through causes of conflicts, ways of identifying conflict signs, how to prevent conflicts from escalating and the need for inter-agency collaboration in conflict prevention and management. (NAN)