By Mmaduabuchi Onwumelu
The Senator Representing Anambra Central Senatorial District, Chief Sir Victor Umeh, during the 2023 Annual Peace Advocates Convention organized by United Nations Peace and Positive Living Awareness Centre, UN PEPOLAC, bagged the Ambassador for World Peace Award.
Receiving the award, Senator Umeh said he would continue to advance the cause of peace in the world, especially in Anambra Central Senatorial Zone.
He thanked the organizers for deeming it necessary to honour him with such an important award, saying that he had been an advocate of peace and peaceful co-existence in Nigeria and now the world.
Speaking on Igbo harassment in Lagos, Sen Umeh said it would be addressed on the floor of the Red Chamber, noting that xenophobia cannot be allowed in Nigeria.
‘Igbo people are the indigenous people of Nigeria and they did not migrate from anywhere. It is wrong to harass and intimidate a people in their fatherland,’ Umeh said.
Corroborating Senator Umeh, the traditional ruler of Umueri, in Anambra East Local Government Area of Anambra, His Royal Majesty, Igwe Bennett Emeka (Okebo II) described peace as the best thing that would unite the world, saying that no meaningful thing that could take place in a troubled environment.
In line with its principles of promoting global harmony and cultivating a culture of peace, the United Nations Peace and Positive Living Awareness Centre, UN PEPOLAC, has held its 2023 Annual Peace Advocates Convention, bringing together peace advocates, diplomats, and representatives from various organizations.
The event, held in Awka, had as its theme, “Roles of Peace Advocates in Conflicts Prevention and Management in Nigeria”. It marked a significant milestone in raising awareness about the importance of peace and recognizing the exceptional contributions made by individuals and organizations in this realm.
In his address, the International Coordinator, Right Reverend Ozioma Ozoemena, commended the attendees for their unwavering commitment to peace as he emphasized the urgent need for collaboration and unity in the face of global challenges.
Congratulating all who were inducted as Peace Advocates in their various categories and thanking those who supported in the success of the convention, Right Reverend Ozoemena noted the importance of the convention, which, he said, served the purposes of orientation for Peace Advocates, the opportunity to interact and interface, expand horizon and frontiers and receive new members into the fold of peace advocacy, among others.
In his opening remarks, the chairman of the occasion, Igwe Emeka Ilouno of Ifitedunu, while welcoming all who were present, lauded Governor Chukuwuma Soludo’s effort towards making Anambra State a peaceful society as he stated that UN-PEPOLAC’s commitment was to promote peace and getting more advocates of peace through which a peaceful society could be ensured.
The keynote speakers, Professor Echezona Ifejirika, and Most Reverend Mike Chukwudum, Director Disputes, Crises and Conflicts, UN-PEPOLAC, emphasized the importance of fostering peace and the need for collective efforts of the peace advocates to bring about lasting change in society.
Highlighting the significance of recognizing peace leaders, the convention organizers presented the Peace Awards to exemplary individuals and organizations that had made remarkable contributions to conflict resolution and peace building efforts.
Among the recipients were the senator representing Anambra Central Senatorial District at National Assembly, Senator Victor Umeh, as a Mayor for World Peace; Mrs Phoebe Nwandu as the first woman Mayor for World Peace; Mrs Blessing Ngonadi as the first female Peace Ambassador from London; Professor Clinton Brown Odiagbe as Ambassador for World Peace, among others.