The Minister of Civic Education and National Unity, Comrade Timothy Mtambo, has urged African countries to promote peace and coexistence in order the continent to fast-track its social and economic development aspirations.
Mtambo made the remarks recently during his presentation at the international conference on interfaith and dialogue, which was held by the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs.
The conference kicked off on Saturday, 13th March,2021 in Cairo, Egypt, with over 35African countries participating, including Malawi.
The two-day conference, which came under the auspices of President Abdel Fattah El Sisi, tackled 30 research papers from 75 key delegates which aimed to consolidate the dialogue between cultures and religions.
The conference agenda of the activities focused on the concept of dialogue and its objectives and the effect of constructive dialogue on combating terrorism and human peacemaking.
In his presentation titled ‘Successful Dialogue: What Are the Underlying Factors?’, Mtambo said there is a link between peace and sustainable development, such that states require peaceful coexistence of people in order to enjoy sustainable development.
However, the minister admitted that realizing the right to peace would require a global transformation towards a culture of peace.
“A key role in the promotion of a culture of peace belongs to parents, teachers, journalists, religious bodies and groups, intellectuals, those engaged in scientific, philosophical and creative and artistic activities, health and humanitarian workers, managers at various levels as well as non-governmental organizations,” he said.
Mtambo noted that there many factors that can disturb peaceful co-existence of peoples; hence, it is important to educate development partners about human rights and interrelatedness of all human rights, including peace and sustainable development.
“The critical connections between these domains is recognized in the 2030 Agenda for Sustainable Development. Peace dialogue is guided by the United Nations’ approaches to peace, development and human rights and more specifically, by the vision and values of the World Summit for Social Development that placed social integration on the international agenda.It can be regarded as a multi-stakeholder process of mutual accommodation in social transformation to create a “society for all” he said.
In his opening speech, Grand Imam of Al-Azhar Sheikh Ahmed El Tayeb said Islam is not a separate belief from other divine religions. “Islam has established peace as a principle for treatment between Muslims and non-Muslims. Deputy Sheikh of Al Azhar Mohamed el-Dawini has stressed Al Azhar is rejecting the theory of clash of civilizations and calls for establishing a genuine peace among people.
AL Azhar is confronting attempts to exploit religion as a tool to sow the seeds of sedition among people of one homeland.
Celebrating the International Day of Human Fraternity on February 4, 2021, President Sisi called upon the world to spread the culture of peace and to uphold the values of tolerance and peaceful coexistence.
“The world today is celebrating an important human value that we need more than ever before. It is the value of human fraternity… This momentous occasion reminds all of us of the importance of dialogue to understand and accept the other and the importance of strengthening cooperation to reject fanaticism, confront hate speech, and spread the values of tolerance, justice and equality in order to achieve peace and stability,” he said.
And giving his address, Mtambo, who addressed the high-level delegation on “successful dialogue and underlying factors” said for a successful dialogue, there is need to maintain good aspects and values which are critical in promoting peace and sustaining Unity.
“We should learn to live people speak by themselves in times of crisis and allow facilitators of dialogue be impartial, hold confidentiality, respect and remain focused for this is crucial and key in realizing a successful dialogue. He went further to mention political will as another aspect which can bring sanity in a successful dialogue,” he said.
Mtambo, who was the only Malawian delegate and minister from Southern Africa, said his ministry has already set up platforms which are key in promoting and enhancing successful dialogue and urged all delegates to create an enabling environment of engagement if peace and unity is to prevail.
Arab Head of parliament representative, Assoum, concurred with the Malawi Minister saying humanity need to lay down to the concept of dialogue and build the values of tolerance and respect for communities and their different cultures.
Wrapping up his two-day stay Mtambo was privileged to hold a courtesy interaction with the Egyptian foreign Minister of Endowments Dr. Mohamed Mukhtar Gomaa.
During the courtesy call, the counterpart Minister pledged support to Malawi with some training that would see Malawi benefiting from knowledge and skill in appreciating Arabic culture. He also said he his country will soon be adopting social education approach which can enhance dialogues among countries.
International Conference of the Supreme Council for Islamic Affairs is an event, which is held every year organized by the Ministry of Endowments, with the aim consolidating inter religious and intercultural religions.
The event seeks to consolidate research papers from different stakeholders ranging from academician’s civil society, governments and religious groups to translate endowment publications into foreign languages and send imams of languages to foreign countries to spread true religion.
The event tackles a number of important topics varying from the current situation. This year the event was held in Cairo, Egypt, under the theme “intercultural and inter-religious dialogue”.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :