The Director General, National Orientation Agency (NOA), Dr. Garba Abari has called on politicians to desist from politicizing the issue of Ruga settlement policy, describing it as a well thought out policy of government towards solving the perennial herders/farmers crises.

Speaking at a Stakeholders Engagement on Building a People of Peace: Focus on Gender Perspective organized by the Agency in Abuja, Abari said the Ruga Settlement project is only for States where their Governments willingly provide land for it, reassuring Nigerians that the project will not be implemented by compulsion as some have claimed.

The NOA Director General said politicians are deliberately propagating unsubstantiated information to stoke the flames of distrust and suspicion among Nigerians over the herders/farmers issue. He therefore urged Nigerians to be vigilant to the antics of politicians and not be misled. He also called on the media to be investigative and analytical about the issue so as to disseminate only correct information and not fan the embers of hate and disintegration.

On the need to mainstream the role of women in peace building efforts, Abari was emphatic that no peace building effort will achieve much without sustainable gender inclusion because women and children are the most affected by insurgency and other forms of insecurity. In his words, “Within the framework of the National Gender Policy, we need to begin to expand the frontiers of our engagements. We need to create platforms for women to contribute to building a people of peace.”

Chairman of the occasion and immediate past Director General of NOA, Dr. Mike Omeri in his remarks stressed that peace building is a key concept of development, noting that prosperity and wealth only go to regions of stability. He therefore urged Nigerians to resist those who fan the embers of disunity by refusing to tow the path of intolerance which they prescribe.

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