dopNigeria Youth 4 Peace Initiative (NY4PI) announces a One-Day National Youth Summit under the theme “Youth Participation in Countering Violent Extremism: Opportunities and Challenges” scheduled to hold at the Institute for Peace and Strategic Studies, University of Ibadan, Ibadan, Oyo State, Nigeria on Thursday, April 6, 2017.

A statement by the coordinator of the youth organisation, Mr Lawal Rafiu Adeniran, made available to reporters, the Youth Summit will converge youth and relevant stakeholders to explore how to address the drivers of violent extremism and promote peace, how youth,         an important partner can be engaged in the design and implementation of relevant programs and policies against violent extremism.

The summit, Lawal highlighted, is coming after the end of the regional youth summit on countering violent extremism which was organised by Search For Common Ground (SFCG) in Maiduguri, Borno State in November 2016. According to him, “this national youth summit is intended towards ensuring that the experiences and outcomes of the regional summit are disseminated to a wider network.”

Professor Olawale Albert, Director, Institute for Peace and Strategic Studies, University of Ibadan, is expected to lead participants on the theme: Youth Participation in Countering Violent Extremism: Opportunities and Challenges.

Mr. Ronald Kayanja, Country Director, United Nations Information Centre (UNIC) Lagos, will also be exploring the “Legal Framework of Youth Participation (UNSCR 2250) in Countering Violent Extremism”.

In the same line, the representative of West African Network for Peacebuilding (WANEP-Nigeria) will lead the discussion on “Strengthening Effective Partnerships for Countering Violent Extremism’’, and Zebulon Takwa (Ph.D), Peace and Development Advisor, UNDP, will focus participants attention on Preventing Violent extremism: The Antidote of Education.

The organisation maintains that the summit is aimed at raising awareness on how youth participation, protection, partnership, prevention, and engagements can counter violent extremism and foster sustainable peace and development in our communities. It is intended to engage and strengthen local and national networks of young people focused on addressing violent extremism in their own communities and provide an opportunity to share experiences, challenges, and best practices to prevent/counter violent extremism across Nigeria.” Adeniran added.

During the summit, participants are expected to come up with an action plan towards building the resilience of communities against the surge of violent extremism.

Lastly, Mr. Lawal calls on all stakeholders including government, youth, private sector, media, academia, civil society and international agencies to unite to prevent the surge of violent extremism.

Yusuf Olayode

Member, Nigeria Youth 4 Peace Initiative (NY4PI)