NNN: The North East Development Commission (NEDC) announced that it has embarked on a peace and interfaith dialogue outreach program to promote peaceful coexistence in the North East region.
The NEDC Managing Director, Mr. Mohammed Alkali, disclosed this while graduating 200 trainees from its ICT Training Program, Batch C, on Monday in Bauchi.
He said the Commission has extended its reach to communities to educate young people about the dangers of extremism and radicalization.
He said effective campaign strategies had been adopted to prevent individuals most at risk from being radicalized by a terrorist group.
According to him, the Commission is stepping up the awareness campaign on religious extremism and the ways to recognize the signs of extremism as well as the skills to correctly identify its ills.
Alkali said the program would emphasize moderation and peaceful coexistence in the region.
“We will use radio which is good for our local people and there are other programs which involve physical engagement where we will involve elders, emirs, chiefs and whoever can give respite to what we are saying.
“NEDC strives to increase knowledge, respect for peace and peaceful coexistence in the region by engaging selected young people towards de-radicalization to encourage radicalized individuals to disengage and provide psychosocial support for better livelihoods,” he said.
Alkali said the Commission has graduated 580 young people under batches A, B and C of the ICT training program in Bauchi state.
He said that the Commission has established ICT resource centers in selected higher education institutions in the six zone states, in line with its strategic plan to improve access to ICT.
According to him, the objective is to improve access to ICT resources and to equip the young people who swarm throughout the region with the professional skills and tools necessary to make them autonomous.
Furthermore, Governor Bala Mohammed commended the Commission for its humanitarian interventions in the region.
Represented by his Chief of Staff, Mr. Aminu Gamawa, the Governor expressed his optimism that the graduates would be a hope of creativity where they can think freely and have tools to work with.
The News Agency of Nigeria reports that the Commission has distributed economic empowerment kits to 200 graduates of the ICT training program to enable them to set up their businesses.
The NEDC also donated 20,000 cartons of assorted drugs and medical consumables to the Bauchi government to prevent a cholera outbreak in the state.
NAN also reports that the Commission’s management team inspected the ongoing construction of 500 housing units in Bauchi. (