General News Mon, 1 Sep 2008

KAIPTC adopts model of W/A peacekeeping initiative

Accra, Sept. 1, GNA - The Kofi Annan International Peacekeeping Training Centre (KAIPTC) has adopted the model of West African Peacekeeping Initiative (WAPI) into the academic curricula for peacekeeping trainees.

This is to ensure that after enforcement and establishment of peace in a conflict zone, peacekeepers participate in efforts to build peace. Major-General John K. Attipoe, Commandant of the KAIPTC, said this on Monday at the opening of the 7th West Africa Peace building Institute (WAPI) workshop in Accra. He called on stakeholders in the sub-region to support institutions such as the KAIPTC not only to hold such conferences but also promote and build capacity of both the military and their civilian operators in peacekeeping.

The three-week course, offered annually by the West Africa Network for Peace building (WANEP), is being attended by 50 participants from 23 countries, including Germany, Britain, Rwanda, Sudan and Ghana. Major-General Attipoe lauded the efforts of Ghana in promoting and supporting efforts at maintaining peace.

The course focuses on peace building; facilitated dialogue and mediation; justice-building and conflict resolution; women and gender mainstreaming in peace-building; youth and peace education; early warning and early response and human security, development and peace. The training also seeks to strengthen the capacity of civil society-based peace building practitioners and institutions across the West Africa sub-region and beyond.

It is aimed at promoting the development of indigenous responses to conflict, provide specialised, intensive and culturally sensitive training in conflict transformation and peace building to individuals, civil society organisations (CSOs), policy-makers, and other relevant actors. Major-General Attipoe entreated the participants to be ambassadors of peace-building and called on CSOs to actively engage in addressing peace in the society.


Mr. Emmanuel Bombande, Executive Director of WANEP, said six courses would be offered during the period. The courses are highly interactive and participatory, blending theory and practice in the field of peace-building.

Mr Bombande said the objectives of the course were to develop action-oriented capacity for conflict transformation and peace building, increase the number of competent, informed, and active peace building practitioners in West Africa and worldwide and provide quality training in peace building at a reduced cost. It would also offer participants an opportunity to develop context specific and indigenous models of conflict transformation and peace building that can be integrated with existing models and bridge the gap between policy and practice in peace building.

Mr K. T. Hammond, Deputy Minister of the Interior, said the government's commitment to creating a peaceful environment for business had led to the setting up of the National Peace Council (NPC) in collaboration with the UNDP Country Office as an autonomous advisory body.

He said the NPC was to assist the Government to engage parties in conflicts in dialogue towards peace. The 11-member Council includes eminent religious leaders, chiefs and private individuals of high repute selected through broad based consultation processes with all stakeholders including political parties, chiefs, youth and women groups. Mr Hammond said its mandate, as captured under the Country Programme Action Plan (CPAC) is specifically to monitor conflicts and advice the Government and its partners on how to mediate, deepen dialogue between conflicting parties and also provide a policy framework within which to deal with conflict situations. He said the Council had been replicated at the regional and district levels with Regional Peace Advisory Councils (RPAC) and District Peace Advisory Councils (DPAC). Mr Hammond also expressed the need to develop national and international strategic framework to provide sustainable peace to the West Africa sub-region. He said peace was a prerequisite for the development of any continent and the country should uphold it in order to maintain a national structure for development. Mr Hammond said "a continent or country persistently at war does not attract investors and developers" and called on all stakeholders to prevent tribal, political and religious conflicts.

Source: GNA