Malawi to launch National Peace Policy, commemorates International Day of Peace

Malawi will on Wednesday launch the first ever National Peace Policy in the history of this country and commemorate the 2017 International Day of Peace.

Chisambi Shema (center) addresses the press

The commemorations will be held under the theme ‘Together for peace; respect, safety and dignity for all’.

This year’s commemorations will seek to achieve three main objectives that include; highlighting the need to embrace diversity a pre-requisite for promoting peace, create space for launching, disseminating and publicizing the National Peace Policy and to showcase Malawi’s rich cultural diversity.

Speaking in Lilongwe on Monday during the press briefing, Director of Cabinet Services in the Office of the President and Cabinet, Marjorie Chisambo Shema said Malawi is known as a peaceful country, warm heart of Africa.

“Peace does not only mean the absence of direct violence which result in hurting people or loss of life and damaging property, but also the absence of indirect/structures violence embedded in social, cultural, economic, religious and political systems that perpetuate exploitation, injustice and inequalities,” she explained.

According to her, conflicts are normal, will happen but they should not necessarily degenerate into violence, skirmishes or turmoil. Protests are on the rise, legal but they ought to be peaceful.

Shema said that a 2013 Consultant Report identified major causes of conflicts that are crosscutting – political, socioeconomic and development rights, cultural and religious diversity, gaps in the legal and policy framework, traditional leadership succession, cultural and religious diversity, extractive industries, land problems among others.

“The 2013 study noted some challenges, most of the initiatives are often reactive, disparate and non-holistic, fragmented support, legitimacy, politicization, capacity and limited resources,” she added.

Vice Chair for Civil Society Taskforce on National Peace Architecture, Ambassador Ron Nkomba (Retired) said the launch is critical regard as it is the culmination of five years of work which partners that have been working together have been going through to establish the National Peace Architecture.

“This is the overarching body that we are establishing to coordinate and collaborate with all the initiatives that have been going on in the country to maintain peace and solve problems through mediation and dialogue,” he pointed out.

The launch will take place in Lilongwe at the Bingu International Convention Centre (BICC), President Professor Peter Mutharika will preside over the ceremony.

 

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