Kelvin Obambon|5 September 2018
CALABAR- A non-governmental organization, Partner For Peace(P4P) Network in the Niger Delta, last week, organized a 2-day training workshop on needs assessment and capacity building for its members in Cross River State.
The training held in Calabar, the state capital, was to acquaint members with knowledge and skills in organizational management, capacity building and organizational health and balancing.
Speaking on the purpose of the workshop, the facilitator, Mr Yemi Osanyin, said, ''the workshop was designed to enable us discuss, interact and cooperatively establish what needs to be done for Partners For Peace Network in Cross River State to work better, achieve result and make impact in its environment.
'' We know that our work is more of mobilization and promotion, and it is very important that P4P is a strong and effective organization to carry out what we set to do. For us to continually improve on what we do, we need to assess ourselves and evaluate what we do.''
On what the training hopes to achieved, Mr Osanyin said, '' This intervention(training) has been designed in such a way that over a period of time, we can do some things together in form of capacity development in various areas so that at the end, the Network can become more effective. This is a mission which covers a period of time and it is to enable us work with the Network to bring improvement in different areas, for instance, areas of governance, resource mobilization, financial management, organizational communication, the programmes and services that we offer to the various communities where we are present. The whole essence of the training workshop is repositioning, and collectively for the Network to be better than it is right now.''
Also speaking in an exclusive interview with NEGROIDHAVEN, shortly after the training session, the Cross River State coordinator of Partner For Peace Network, Pastor(Dr) Moses Abang, stated that Partner For Peace Network is a civil society organization, launched in Port Harcourt, Rivers State in 2013, with active presence in all the 9 states of Niger Delta region. He said the organization is committed to establishing peace in its operational environment through advocacy, dialogue and active intervention in crisis areas.
Dr Abang affirmed that P4P is into partnership with the Cross River State government and has so far carriedout interventions in several local government areas in the state that were at one time or the other affected by conflict, adding it has deployed trackers across the 9 states in the Niger Delta to notify the organization of crisis anywhere within the region.
On what the organization is doing to ensure peace before, during and after the forthcoming 2019 general elections, the state coordinator disclosed that Partner For Peace Network has established sub chapters at the local level to sensitize people on peace during the elections, and would also embarked on peace rally and advocacy on the 21 September to mark World Peace Day, as it intends to use the occasion to advocate the need for peaceful conduct of 2019 elections.
Pastor(Dr) Moses Abang however lamented the inability of the organization to operate effectively in the state due to paucity of funds for effective implementation of its policies and programmes. He therefore appealed for support from individuals, groups and international agencies, maintaining that no environment can develop without peace as a precondition.
His words, ''Partner For Peace is a civil society organization and it is the brain-child of Partnership in the Niger Delta. P4P was launched in Port Harcourt in 2013 and its across 9 Niger Delta states. Its membership is opened to individuals and organizations with commitment to peace and development in the Niger Delta region.
''Partner For Peace began in 2013 -this is 5 years we have been in Cross River State. From 2013 we have been partnering with the state government till date. We have carriedout several interventions in Bakassi, Usumutong, Akamkpa, Yakurr, Yala, Boki, Ogoja and Bekwarra.
''Just the beginning of this August, we 've established 4 sub chapters in Bakassi, Akamkpa, Boki and Obudu. These sub chapters are to sensitize people on peace during the elections, and as I'm talking to you, September 21st will be World Peace Day, we are going out to the street to sensitize people about the World Peace Day as well as the forthcoming elections and how we can ensure peace.
''Basically, one of the major challenges is insufficient funding. We don't have enough funds to carryout our programmes. For instance, the Ukelle/Yala and Beebong/Akpabong in Boki clashes, we needed to be there. So, once you don't have funds to move, you can't do much as expected, even though we have the information -because we have trackers in the 9 Niger Delta states that give us information where there are crisis.''
Among participants who expressed satisfaction with the nature and scope of the training workshop were Alhaji Shaaban Abdullahi, secretary, Hausa/Fulani Muslim Community in Cross River State, Ms Careen Nkereuwem, state secretary, P4P, Cross River State and Miss Offiong Mary Edem, who are also members of Partner For Peace, Cross River State Chapter.
Kelvin Obambon is a Guest Blogger with NegroidHaven