On the occasion of World Peace Day on September 21st, the General Officer Commanding (GOC) 3 Division of the Nigerian Army, Major General AE Abubakar, expressed openness to collaborative peacebuilding efforts during a courtesy visit from The Para-Mallam Peace Foundation.
Receiving a delegation from the foundation at his office at the Maxwell Kobe Barracks in Jos on Thursday, Maj Gen Abubakar acknowledged their commendations on the army’s role in restoring stability across Plateau State. “We appreciate the Para-Mallam Peace Foundation’s constructive engagement and support for our peacekeeping operations. Your work complements ours in achieving sustainable peace,” he stated.
The peace delegation was led by Rev. Dr. Gideon Para-Mallam, President and CEO of the foundation, along with his wife, Prof. Olufunmilayo Para-Mallam, mni, Deputy Chief Imam of the Jos Central Mosque, Sheikh Adam Ghazali and others. They lauded the efforts made by the army under Maj Gen Abubakar’s leadership to curb violence in Plateau and neighboring states.
In response, the GOC recognized the need for collaborative approaches in resolving security challenges. “While the army continues undertaking kinetic operations, we encourage non-kinetic initiatives by groups like yours to heal divides and change hearts and minds,” he noted.
Maj Gen Abubakar pledged 3 Division’s commitment to supporting programs by the Para-Mallam Peace Foundation focused on disarmament, reintegration and rehabilitation of ex-combatants. “We are ready to facilitate your interfaith dialogues and community peace education campaigns aimed at building tolerance,” he added.
According to the senior army commander, lasting peace can only be achieved through collective action involving the military, government and civil society groups. He expressed optimism that Plateau State will reclaim its identity as the ‘Home of Peace and Tourism’ through these joint efforts.
The World Peace Day visit highlights cooperation between security agencies and peacebuilding organizations to restore calm in Nigeria’s crisis-prone regions. With the army adopting a community-focused approach, partnerships with groups like Para-Mallam Peace Foundation remain essential to reconcile and stabilize restive areas.