The United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) in partnership with the National Peace Council urged young people to tolerate diversity and reject individuals and groups that seek to mobilize them to engage in violence for political or extremist ambitions.
The youth were engaged as part of activities marking the commemoration of the 2019 International Day of Tolerance under the theme “embracing our differences to promote peace and social cohesion in Ghana”.
The event aimed at educating young people on the importance of tolerance in achieving peace and social cohesion by inspiring them to understand their roles as peace ambassadors in their communities.
Nana Chinbuah, the Head of Governance at UNDP underscored the need to be tolerant of people’s ethnicity, culture and religion for peaceful coexistence. She said:
“It is important that tolerance and peaceful co-existence become our hallmark. If we have these values, we will respect the difference we have and live in peace”.
The Chairperson of the National Commission for Civic Education (NCCE), Josephine Nkrumah noted at the event that conversations on peace should no longer be a reserve for adults but be inclusive of young people as they usually suffer consequences in times of disputes and conflicts.
“Over 1.5 billion people at any given point living across the world suffer from some sort of disputes. And the vast majority of these 1.5 billion people suffering as a result of conflict are made up of young ones”.
On his part, Rev Dr Nii Amoo Darku, a Board Member of the National Peace Council added that there was the need to inculcate the habit of tolerance in the youth to build them up to be critical thinkers, ethical and morally upright.
“Education for tolerance should aim at countering influences that lead to fear and exclusion of others and should help young people develop capacities to make independent decisions”, he said.
The Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 16 commits all UN Member States to promote peaceful and inclusive societies for sustainable development, provide access to justice for all, and build effective, accountable and inclusive institutions at all levels. This year’s International tolerance day was marked to shed light and address common issues of intolerance that often jeopardize the peace and stability of countries as a result of disregard for one another’s socio-cultural differences.
About United Nations Development Programme (UNDP)
UNDP partners with people at all levels of society to help build nations that can withstand crisis, and drive and sustain the kind of growth that improves the quality of life for everyone. On the ground in more than 170 countries and territories, we offer a global perspective and local insight to help empower lives and build resilient nations. Kindly visit www.gh.undp.org for further information on UNDP Ghana.