By Ugo Aliogo
UFUK Dialogue, an international non-governmental organisation based in Abuja has sought an end to violent extremism in Nigeria through love and tolerance.
This much was revealed at an international conference on love and tolerance organised by UFUK Dialogue in collaboration with the Institute of Peace and Conflict Resolution in Abuja recently.
The conference which was well attended, had speakers like Cardinal John Onaiyekan, Archbishop of Abuja, Dr Rachel Rudolph, an international expert on religious extremism and a host of other international speakers.
The Minster of Youths and Sports, Solomon Dalung, who was among the panellists at the event, spoke extensively on the origin of the Boko Haram insurgency and how the lack of tolerance further gave steam to the insurgents to continue to cause havoc and pitch the Christians against the Muslims through their activities and making it look like a religious crisis.
“Boko Haram insurgents took advantage of our impatience and intolerance to cause havoc. The Koran does not encourage killing and likewise the Bible,” he stated.
On his part, the Director General of the IPCR, Prof. Oshita Oshita, said: “Ihe event was aimed at highlighting love and tolerance as veritable tools towards countering violent extremism in the society.
“We cannot ignore the role of tolerance and love in every functional society. And it must be stated emphatically that what Nigeria needs at this point in time is love and tolerance” he stated. He also added that “ with love in our hearts, we would be able to tolerate one another, including our religious affiliation and cultural inclination”
In his remark, the Archbishop of Abuja Diocese, Cardinal John Onaiyekan, who was one of the religious leaders present at the event, commended the UFUK Dialogue for its insight in putting together such an important event.
“UFUK Dialogue must be commended for this wonderful initiative. This is very timely especially in this period of our existence.”
Commenting of the objective of the conference, the Director of UFUK Dialogue, Mr. Kamil Kemanci, stated: “The conference is aimed at ensuring that love and tolerance continue to dominate our actions, inactions and relationships in the quest to build a better society for all”. He further added that UFUK Dialogue Foundation aims to stimulate thinking and exchange of opinions towards fostering democracy and peace all over the world”.
The well-attended event had in attendance representatives of the religious and political class, as well as representatives of the service chiefs and the Inspector General of Police.
The technical session was chaired by Mrs Sardutu Shehu Mardi of the Women’s Rights Advancement and Protection Alternative (WRAPA).
At the end of the event, all the speakers proffered ways in which love and tolerance could be used to ensure peaceful coexistence in the country. Part of which is respecting the choices of others and not to consider ourselves superior to others.
UFUK Dialogue was founded in 2011 in Nigeria with the mission to foster inter-faith and inter-cultural dialogue, stimulate thinking and exchange of opinions on supporting and fostering democracy and peace all over the world and to provide a common platform for education and information exchange.