Post insurgency: NHRC trains Journalists on reconciliation, transitional justice in North East

The National Human Rights Commission (NHRC) has commenced training of journalists in North East on promoting reconciliation, reintegration and transitional justice.

The News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) reports that the training, which is a pilot project funded by European Union, is being implemented in Borno, Adamawa and Yobe states in collaboration with United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).

In an address at the training in Yola on Monday, the Executive Secretary of NHRC, Tony Ojukwu, said the pilot project was to initiate community-led process for nonjudicial transitional justice and reconciliation as a foundation for reintegration and post conflict recovery in the North-East.

Ojukwu who was represented by Mr Hilary Ogbonna, the Project Coordinator, explained that the transitional justice would aid in accelerating the process of healing and offer both victims and community opportunities for justice and reconciliation with returning ex-combatants.

Ojukwu noted that the success of the post conflict programmes would depend on strategic advocacy and communication.

He said this would ginger communities to embrace reconciliation as a foundation for recovery and development.

“The media plays a crucial role in information dissemination, awareness creation and the shaping of public opinions.

“In recognition of this important role, the media is therefore, an essential partner in promoting transitional justice and reconciliation in the north-east.

“No effort should be spared in building the capacity of media professionals to embrace and perform this role effectively,” Ojukwu said.

According to him, the training for journalists in the insurgency affected states is expected to, among others, build the capacity of media professionals on the concept of transitional justice and its imperatives for Post-Conflict in the North-East as well as create a network of media professionals on transitional justice.

The Solicitor-General of Adamawa, Mr Samuel Yaumande and the Permanent Secretary of Adamawa Ministry of Reconstruction, Rehabilitation and Reintegration and Humanitarian Services, Mrs Aishatu Umar, described the project as timely as displaced persons returned to their ancestral land.

They reiterated Adamawa Government’s commitment to support the project.

Papers presented on the first day of the training included “Role of Media in Peace Building, Reconciliation and Transitional Justice in Post Conflict Societies in West Africa” and “Transitional Justice: Meaning and Approaches”.

Others are “The Role of the Media in Promoting people-centred approaches to reconciliation and reintegration in post-conflict North East Nigeria” and “Building Community Confidence and Resilience in the process of reception and reintegration of deradicalised ex-Boko Haram and returnees. (NAN)