Bandits in Kaduna

Women in Southern Kaduna have called for their inclusion in peace building processes in the area.

The women made the call on Wednesday in Kafanchan at the launch of a Non-Governmental organization, the Southern Kaduna Women Peace Network (SKWPN).

Speaking at the occasion chairperson of the organisation , Mrs Comfort Kazanka, noted that women were hardly involved in the value chain of peace building in the area in spite of bearing the bulk of the suffering during conflicts.

“For over a decade now, women in Southern Kaduna have been the invisible victims of the sectarian violence that has resulted in untold hardships.

“In the brief interludes between the outbreaks of violence, it is the women that take on the roles of breadwinners, nurses, counselors and so on.

“But when it comes to strategising for reconciliation, rebuilding and restoration, women are not seen or heard,’’ she said.

According to her, women’s skills, knowledge, intuition and empathy are resources that will readily enrich any peace process.

Kazanka said SKWPN is a network that would promote and support efforts aimed at ensuring that voices of women are heard and respected in all peace building processes in Southern Kaduna.

“Today, with the launch of this organisation, women have come together to assert their roles as peace advocates whose voices must be heard.

“This network will continue to nurture the bonds that have facilitated healing of the trauma of yesterday’s violence,” she added.

Dr Victoria Gambo, one of the guest speakers, said the time had come to harness the full potentials of women as peace builders in the society.

Gambo noted that women had maintained friendships and kinship across religious, ethnic and social-cultural divides that had helped in restoring and sustaining communal harmony.

“An often ignored socio-cultural factor in Southern Kaduna is the decade long marital relationships across tribes and religions.

“These bonds are nourished by women as they facilitate the socio-economic recoveries in our communities,’’ Gambo said. (NAN)

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