As part of measures to fight the menace of terrorism, violent extremism, armed conflicts and other crises threatening the peace and security of the continent, President Muhammadu Buhari has called on the African Union and the regional economic blocs within Africa to coordinate their efforts in order to combat the trend.
President Buhari, who made the call while declaring open a three-day retreat of the Peace and Security Council of the African Union, noted that attention should be focused on how the Council and the regional economic communities can enhance effectiveness using their comparative advantages and various capacities in the areas of early warning and early action, conflict prevention , peace- keeping, post-conflict peace building, reconstruction, development, democratic practice and good governance, as well as combating terrorism and violent extremism.
The three-day retreat commenced on Monday in Abuja with the theme, “Enhancement of Cooperation Between the Peace and Security Council of the African Union and the Regional Economic Communities/ Regional Mechanisms for Conflict Prevention, Management and Resolution in the Promotion of Peace, Security and Stability in Africa.”
The President, who was represented by Vice President Yemi Osinbajo, said the theme was apt because it provided Africa with an effective mechanism for management of peace and security.
Buhari said, “Terrorism and violent extremism present fresh problems to large number of internally displaced persons and refugees going across the borders of neighbouring countries.
“The sheer variety and complexity of these challenges obliged the Peace and Security Council and the regional economic communities to more effectively coordinate and harmonise their efforts in complementary manner in order to address the problems more effectively.”
He praised the Security Council for providing Africa with an effective mechanism for the management of peace and security, saying the PSC has been a novel African initiative in many respects in its 11 years of existence.
By Patrick Aigbokhan