Seminar on Day of Peace in Nigeria

Abuja, Nigeria - For UPF-Nigeria and Ambassadors for Peace, the UN's theme for the International Day of Peace 2012, "Sustainable Peace for a Sustainable Future," was close to the theme of the national conferences that UPF-Nigeria was holding around the country on marriage and family as instruments for peace. Based on the UN theme, the committee organized a two-day seminar on the theme “Marriage and Family as Instruments for Sustainable Peace, National Development, and Sustainable Future.”

Preparation time for the event was short, and the members of the committees worked hard to prepare for the event. High-level contacts were made, and there was positive response, especially from government agencies.

September 21

The first day started with prayers offered by Christian and Muslim representatives.

The Christian prayer was offered by a popular Christian minister, Rev. Dr. Maiwaazi Dauda, President of Maiwaazi International Ministries; while the Islamic prayer was offered by H.R.H. Abubakar Lawal, Northern Coordinator of the Association of Royal Traditional Rulers of Nigeria. This was followed by the National Anthem led by UPF's in-house band directed by Mr. Bright Perekpo.

After the national anthem, a moment of silence was observed in respect for the founder of UPF, Rev. Dr. Sun Myung Moon, who passed on September 3 and was interred on September 15. After the silent prayer, the Deputy Secretary General of UPF-Nigeria Rev. George Ogurie, gave a tribute to Dr. Moon. He touched and moved the hearts of the participants with his explanation of Father Moon’s suffering and sacrificial course. His explanation created a solemn atmosphere that filled the hall and made people sober as they reflected on the life of the founder. It brought Ambassadors for Peace and other participants to deeply appreciate Father Moon.

Col. Dr. Gab Musa from the Presidency gave the opening remarks, while the Secretary General of UPF-Nigeria, Mr. Olaleye Alao, presented the UN Secretary-General’s Peace Day message and the UPF founder’s message titled “The Peaceful Family Is the Building Block of Heaven.” This concluded the opening session of the first day.

The second (working) session opened with lectures on the main title of Nigeria’s event: “Marriage and Family as Instruments for Sustainable Peace, National Development, and Sustainable Future.” This session had four presentations on the definition and clarification of core values on marriage and family featuring:

  • Islamic perspective by a very brilliant Islamic scholar, Mallam Junaid Abdulquadr
  • Christian perspective by a very renowned Christian minister, Pastor Tim Ozare of the Divine Concept Mission
  • Traditional perspective by King Solomon Chukwuka, a king from Delta State, Nigeria
  • Marriage and family in the natural and human worlds by Rev. George Ogurie of UPF

This brought to conclusion the events of the first day.

September 22

The second day showcased an array of very distinguished Nigerians with expertise in their area of interests and in particular peace and security.

This session featured four lectures, all related to the issues of peace and security.

The session opened with Islamic and Christian prayers followed with the National Anthem and opening remarks by the chairman of the day, Col. Dr. Gab. O. Musa. Mr. Olaleye Alao in his remarks spoke very passionately about the UPF founder’s life. He then urged Ambassadors for Peace to emulate the founder’s standard of public life and practice the UPF principles and core values – “Life for others.”

The lecture presentations were of very high standard and deeply moved the participants. Presentations included lectures by:

  • Brigadier-General Chris O. Ilouga, Commander of the 31st Artillery Brigade of the Nigerian Army, Minna, Niger State. He spoke on, “A Crises-Torn Homeland: Reflections of a Soldier.”
  • Col. (Dr.) Gab O. Musa spoke on “Politics, Homeland Security and National Development: The Way Forward.” (Dr. Musa is the Secretary of the Presidential Implementation Committee on Maritime Security Service.)
  • Dr. J. Balewa, Personal Physician to the President, spoke on “Peace: The Need for Symmetric Resonance.” Dr. Balewa, a foremost nuclear scientist and the son of the first Prime Minister of Nigeria, had earlier told Dr. George Ikpot, National Coordinator of UPF-Nigeria, that he had been tutored by Rev. Moon through Rev. Moon’s books. His lecture elicited ovations from the audience.
  • Mrs. Florence Iheme, Ag. Director of the Department of Early Warning, ECOWAS, spoke on “Peace and Security: Imperatives for Early Warning Mechanism.” She spoke with great concern about the issues of peace and security in the Sub-Saharan region.

At the end of the seminar, 18 distinguished Nigerians were commissioned as Ambassadors for Peace, including the four lecturers mentioned above.

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