In a reaffirmation of its dedication to fostering peace and tolerance in Nigeria, the U.S. government, via the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), convened a Youth, Peace, and Security Summit in Abuja. Minister of Youth Development, Jamila Bio Ibrahim, graced the event as the keynote speaker, joined by representatives from youth groups and networks supported by the USAID Community Initiatives to Promote Peace (CIPP) activity.
USAID CIPP, a five-year, $15 million initiative, stands as a beacon for promoting peaceful coexistence and collaboration in Nigeria, particularly by mitigating violent conflict in vulnerable communities.
The United States, in partnership with Nigeria, is committed to addressing security challenges by harnessing the collective strengths of religious and traditional leaders, women, youth groups, government officials, and civil society organizations. Through collaborative efforts like USAID CIPP, both nations are jointly identifying and championing community-based solutions, empowering diverse groups to bolster community responses to challenges and construct a resilient and peaceful future.
The summit serves as a platform to showcase the lessons learned and best practices gleaned from USAID’s investment and achievements in enhancing youth participation and leadership in peace processes across six northern states: Kano, Kaduna, Katsina, Benue, Kogi, and Plateau.
Key highlights from the summit include dynamic panel discussions and presentations focused on fortifying peacebuilding efforts and fostering sustainable partnerships between youth-led organizations, government agencies, and civil society groups. Furthermore, the summit amplifies youth voices through the exchange of experiences, successes, and innovative approaches aimed at tackling insecurity challenges.
Addressing the gathering, United States Chargé d’affaires David Greene underscored the significance of the conference, stating, “By attending today’s conference, you’ve each signaled how important the cause of peace is for Nigeria… Youth are the bedrock of society’s social and economic development. The future of Nigeria depends on youth charting a path of peace, as you are the future leaders of this great nation.”