How I ended insurgency in Plateau — Gov. Lalong

Gov. Simon Lalong of Plateau has advocated the setting up of Peace Building Agency in addition to promoting fairness in governance by all tiers of government so as to address the nation’s socio-economic and security challenges.

The governor gave the advice while briefing State House correspondents at the end of a Security Summit organised by the National Economic Council (NEC) at the Presidential Villa, Abuja on Thursday.

Lalong disclosed that he briefed the participants of summit on the successes recorded by Plateau state in the area of peaceful co-existence among the diverse ethnic and religious groups in the state.

He noted that his administration had relatively restored peace in Plateau following the setting up of the Plateau State Peace Building Agency.

The governor stated that measures were also taken by the state government toward addressing the problems of inequality in the distributions of resources and appointments among the inhabitants of the state.

“There were grievances and such grievances were lack of fairness in the distribution resources; lack of fairness in distribution of infrastructure and lack of inclusiveness in governance and appointments.

”We did appointments in Plateau state, some of the appointments had never been done before. It was impossible for people to believe that a Hausa/Fulani man can become a commissioner in Plateau.

“I said, in the interest of peace I will appoint a Hausa/Fulani man, and appointed him and there was peace in Plateau.

“And because of that I also went beyond that to accommodate all the 53 ethnic groups on the Plateau.

”When I said 53 ethnic nationalities I meant beyond indigenes of Plateau – you have those tribes from the Niger Delta, Ibo and Yoruba, all of them are within my cabinet today.
“”Once you have this you need to institutionalize it so that it will outlive your tenure. I set up a Peace Building Agency. It is supported by a law,’’ he said.

According to the governor, the peace agency, an independent body, is saddled with the responsibility for harnessing and collecting opinions of the various communities in the state.

He said: ”They go about getting first hand information and what they are doing is very wonderful to me.

“Now, if you have a peace agency you are talking of conflicts and once you address conflicts you will hear people asking you – now, what next?’’

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