From Agaju Madugba, Katsina
The Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD West Africa) on Tuesday began a two-day capacity-building workshop on, “Reporting transitional justice and peacebuilding for a cross-section of journalists in Katsina.
Speaking at the opening ceremony, the centre’s Director, Idayat Hassan, said the purpose of the programme was to mobilise global opinion and resources for democratic development and provide an independent space to critically reflect on the challenges posed to the democratisation and development processes in West Africa.
He said that the project was being executed by the CDD in collaboration with Mercy Peace Corps, the International Organisation for Migration (IOM) and funded by the European Union.
According to him, “We all can attest to the fact that North West Nigeria is experiencing a complex crisis and high levels of violence arising from communal clashes, friction between farmers and herders, criminal gangs, and non-state armed groups.
“This large-scale violence is fueled by attacks and retaliations affecting a significant part of the population as a result of economic injustice, inequality, poor justice enforcement mechanism and inability to manage crises situation which impedes on economic, social and cultural rights of citizens in affected areas.
“The conflict has claimed thousands of lives each year since 2018, causing substantial losses of assets, weakening institutional and socioeconomic infrastructures, and leaving communities without livelihoods.
“In response to the challenges, the Centre for Democracy and Development (CDD) has partnered with the International Organization for Migration (IOM), Mercy Corps (MC), to implement a comprehensive pilot programme to support the Government of Nigeria’s efforts to mitigate conflict and promote community reconciliation in Katsina State.
“This pilot project implementation covers four local governments of Jibia, Batsari, Danmusa, and Kankara Local Government Areas, in communities affected by conflicts. “The CDD will engage the youth, women and other stakeholders through transitional justice mechanism to bring tranquillity to the affected areas of the state and by extension to northwest Nigeria.”
He said that the CDD was established in Lagos, Nigeria, in 1999 as an independent, research, training, advocacy and capacity-building organisation.
“Its mission is to be the prime catalyst and facilitator for strategic analysis and capacity building for sustainable democracy and development in West Africa,” Hassan said.