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Peace and Security

UPF-Nigeria Ambassadors for Peace Launch Campaign for Year of National Unity

Abuja, Nigeria - As Nigeria prepares to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the colonial amalgamation of the nation in 1914, UPF-Nigeria launched a national campaign advocating for the proclamation of year 2014 as a Year for National Unity and urging all Nigerians to work toward the unity of the nation ridden by religious and ethnic barriers.

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The 40-day campaign was launched on Dec. 12, 2013 at the Top Rank Hotel Galaxy in Utako, Abuja, the nation’s capital city. Attended by Ambassadors for Peace, religious and traditional rulers, politicians, women and youth organizations as well as government representatives, the event had over 250 participants at the launch.

Although the gathering was scheduled for 12:00 noon on Dec. 12, delegates from across the country started arriving at the hotel reception as early as 9:00 am for registration and accreditation. The Permanent Secretary of the Federal Ministry of Power sent a delegation of 12 ministry staff to attend the event with their spouses as a demonstration of the ministry’s support to the vision. The theme of the launch was National Unification 2014 through the Marriage and Family Peace Blessing.

Member of the Board of Trustees of the UPF-Nigeria, Rev. Dr. George Ikpot gave the welcome address. In his words, “UPF Founder Dr. Sun Myung Moon had so much hope for Nigeria and demonstrated it in many ways. Despite the negative media reports of Nigeria, Dr. Moon believed that if Nigeria moves, Africa can move. This is why Nigeria is one of the nations selected by UPF International for its Vision 2020 focus. Our gathering today is to make this happen.”

Olaleye Alao, National President of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification-Nigeria gave the opening address, which provided deep insight into the work of Father and Mother Moon. Alao explained that unless Nigerians stand up for marriage and the family, the future of the nation will remain uncertain. He called on the Ambassadors for Peace to remain committed to transcending boundaries to promote the realization of the hope of all ages.

The program was followed by a brief entertainment by a children's choir, who sang the "Unity" song, and participants joined them in the chorus. UPF-Nigeria Secretary General, Dr. Raphael Ogar Oko, gave an overview of the history of Nigeria from the 1914 amalgamation to the present era and called on participants to support the idea of proclaiming 2014 as a year for national unification. On Oct. 1, 2014, Nigeria will commemorate its 54th anniversary of independence, and he challenged the audience to declare dependence on God and work for national unification. He spoke about the UPF vision of unity based on:

  1. Recognition of the Creator as the parent of humankind
  2. Acceptance of all people as members of one global family under the Creator
  3. Utilization of resources for the advancement of global well-being and a peaceful world

Also, he said that UPF-Nigeria will work to support other African nations and the international community toward the realization of a peaceful world.

The next presentation, on the significance of marriage and family blessing in national unification, was delivered by Rev. George Ogurie, Vice President of the Family Federation for World Peace and Unification-Nigeria. He invited all participants to make a commitment to building healthy marriages and families. “Without united couples and families, we can never achieve national unification. So as you make a commitment to national unification, begin by becoming united couples and strive to build united families.”

Goodwill messages were delivered by representatives of several groups including a former Deputy Governor of Anambra State and a traditional ruler from Nasarawa State in north-central Nigeria. Mr. Olaleye Alao and his wife led participants in a toast for peace and unification. Some distinguished participants, including the Permanent Secretary for the Nasarawa State Government, were appointed Ambassadors for Peace at the closing session of the program. Participants affirmed with voice votes the motion to proclaim 2014 as the Year for National Unification and made a commitment to carry out a similar campaign throughout the nation.

For an announcement of the launch in the News Diary Online, click here.

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