A non-violence project aimed at reducing the involvement of Liberian Youth in violent extremism before, during and after the 2017 general and presidential elections was launched in Monrovia on Friday, June 9, 2017.
Entitled: “Achieving Behavioral Change towards peaceful elections in Liberia”, is a project committed to redirecting youth potential to productive ventures that empower them with knowledge and skills in peace building activities, Mr. B. Abel Learwellie, Executive Director and Founder of Camp for Peace Liberia stated during the launch of the project. He said the project is designed to use the strongest message and strategies in changing youth behavioral patter from abusive campaigns to positive engagement that promote peace before, during and after the 2017 general and presidential elections. He further stressed that the ultimate aim of the project is to reach out, assemble, orientate and build the capacity of youth in and out of schools on tolerance, respect, peaceful co-existence, mindfulness, good leadership and non-violence, emphasizing on the need for them to be fully involved in the entire electoral process of actualizing peaceful elections in Liberia.
For her part, the guest speaker and chief launcher of the project, Ms. Kula V. Fofona, Assistant Minister for Youth Development, Ministry of Youth and Sports conscientized the youth on the interest of the country as the nation’s interest is paramount than any political party. “We the youth are in majority in this country and we are the present and future leaders and must do all to protect the image of our country” she stated. She urged the youth to rise up for the country, not political party.
She also used the occasion to appeal to politicians to stop using ethnocentric and tribal politics, politics of hatred and insult, politics of intolerance for dissenting views during these electoral processes. She said the life of Liberia is in the hands of the youth and shouldn’t allow themselves to be used by politicians to create chaos during this crucial time in our nation’s history.
In separate remarks, representatives of various governmental agencies, political party youth wings, the students community, international and local non-governmental organizations urged the youth to exhibit good behavioral pattern and remain tolerance during these elections. They also lauded camp for peace Liberia for initiating such a worthy project aimed at putting Liberian youth on the right trajectory during crucial time of their country’s history.
In a closing remark, the youth coordinator of Camp for Peace Liberia, Mr. Philip S. Quoq ui acknowledged the United Nations Alliance of Civilization (UNAOC) through its Youth Solidarity Fund (YSF) for supporting this project.