In a bid to respond to the need for improved civilian protection from the incessant attacks on various communities in four states in Nigeria, the CLEEN Foundation has established Early Warning Early Response (EWER) in those states.
It will be recalled that the Foundation recently launched the Early Warning and Early Response (EWER) Project in Nigeria with focus on sixteen (16) communities in four states of the Federation—Kaduna, Plateau, Zamfara and Taraba.
Speaking recently at an “Establishment of EWER Stakeholders’ Forum and Community Safety Partners” in Kaduna State, the CLEEN Foundation Acting Executive Director, Mrs Ruth Olofin, said the project is designed to contribute to the mitigation and to bring to an end the frequent conﬂicts, disappearances and mass violence that is persistent in Northern Nigeria.
Mrs Olofin, who was represented by Mrs Chigozirim Okoro, Assistant Program Manager, in her welcome remarks, said, “Today, we have gathered to “Establish EWER Stakeholders’ Forum and Community Safety Partners” in Kasuwan Magani, Maraban-Kajuru; Kujama & Maraban-Rido of Chikun and Kajuru LGAs of Kaduna State. This is one of the activities under the Village Monitoring System Project on Early Warning Early Response implemented by CLEEN Foundation in Four Volatile States and sixteen Communities in Northern Nigeria.
“The purpose of this workshop is to brief the selected stakeholders on the project goals, objectives, activities and expected outcomes. Also, the workshop seeks to cultivate additional input into EWER implementation strategies, secure buy-in among stakeholders and set up the EWER Stakeholders Forum in Kasuwan Magani, Maraban Kajuru, Kujama & Maraban Rido in Kajuru & Chikun LGAs of Kaduna State”, she noted.
She noted that the project is designed to contribute to the mitigation and to bring to an end the frequent conﬂicts, disappearances and mass violence that is persistent in Northern Nigeria.
She further stated that frequent conflicts and mass violence, are being driven by the effects of climate change; ethnic, religious and cultural tensions; weak response by security agencies, adding that collectively, in a bid to protect themselves, communities have resorted to self-help; self protection and a progress involvement of women through the empowerment of community members, including women, to serve as peace-builders, noting also that these will be trained in early detection and early response to conflicts.
She listed the specific objectives of the project to include: Strengthening understanding of regional conﬂicts and mitigation opportunities through stakeholder assessment and community engagement; Strengthening and expanding linkages in sixteen (16) communities between early warning alerts of incidents and on-the-ground responders through communications and networking activities and to; and Building the capacity of thirty-two (32) early responders to respond to conﬂict incidents and mitigate violence in sixteen (16) Northern Nigerian communities over a two-year period.
“Accordingly, the project is designed to respond to the need for improved civilian protection from the incessant attacks on various communities in the target states in Nigeria. The Northern part of the country has recently seen an increase in the rate of violent conflicts with different underpinnings.
“This calls for review of strategy of operation by duty bearers especially the government and has raised several queries on human security in the country. The United Nations described human security “as an approach that helps in identifying and addressing cross-cutting challenges to the survival, livelihood and dignity of the people; it calls for “people-centred, comprehensive, context-specific and prevention-oriented responses that strengthen the protection and empowerment of all persons.”
She explained that the EWER Stakeholders Forum and Community Safety Partners in Kasuwan Magani & Maraban Kajuru, Kujama & Maraban Rido in Kajuru & Chikun LGAs of Kaduna State, commenced with a mapping study conducted in the focal communities to serve as a baseline for the implementation of the project activities.
A major outcome of the mapping exercise, she said, was the production of a list of stakeholders that formed the Early Warning and Early Response Stakeholders Forum and Community Safety Partners in Kaduna State.
“CLEEN Foundation is committed to promoting public safety and security in Nigeria. We are convinced that a successful implementation of this project will help to mitigate violent conflicts in Kaduna State.
“We therefore solicit for the cooperation of everyone, including, traditional, religious youth, community and women leaders, formal and informal policing groups, the public, Kaduna Peace Commission and other relevant stakeholders in the State to contribute to the realization of the project objectives”, she concluded.