The Edo State Governor, Mr. Godwin Obaseki, has reiterated the need for Nigerians to shun bitterness and other societal divisions and work together, irrespective of their differences, to create and promote an enabling environment for growth and societal advancement.
The governor gave the charge in commemoration of the 2023 International Day of Living Together in Peace, with the theme, “United in differences and diversity.”
The event marked every May 16 aims to encourage people from diverse backgrounds to live together harmoniously and respect and appreciate the differences that exist among individuals and communities, as well as emphasizes the importance of dialogue, cooperation, and mutual understanding in building peaceful and inclusive societies.
According to Obaseki, “This year’s celebration presents yet another opportunity to celebrate the beauty and richness of our differences and diversity as a nation and people. We are blessed with a rich tapestry of cultures, languages, traditions, and beliefs, and must recognize that it is in this diversity that our strength lies. Our collective differences must therefore be celebrated as a source of enlightenment and growth, rather than a cause for division.
“If we must therefore live together and address the myriad of challenges confronting us a people, we must rise above prejudice, bitterness, discrimination, and all other forms of societal stereotypes, and work in unity to foster an inclusive and conducive environment that recognizes the inherent worth and dignity of every person, regardless of their differences and backgrounds. It is only then that we can forge our paths to sustainable growth and development.”
The governor added, “In Edo State, we have long understood the importance of embracing and harnessing our differences and have, as a government, implemented a series of policies and reforms to foster an environment where every citizen feels valued, respected, and included. We recognize that it is through the integration of various perspectives that we can find innovative solutions to the challenges we face and unlock our true potential.”
According to the United Nations, “Living together in peace is all about accepting differences and having the ability to listen to, recognize, respect and appreciate others, as well as living in a peaceful and united way.
“The Day invites countries to further promote reconciliation to help to ensure peace and sustainable development, including by working with communities, faith leaders and other relevant actors, through reconciliatory measures and acts of service and by encouraging forgiveness and compassion among individuals.”