The President, Africa First Ladies Peace Mission (AFLPM) Mrs. Aisha Buhari, has inaugurated the newly constructed headquarters of the mission along Airport Road in Abuja, Nigeria.
The edifice was built on about 2.7 hectares of land acquired by the President while construction work began on November 2021.
The First Lady who was speaking shortly after the inauguration said, the Headquarters provides a befitting office accommodations to ensure a conducive working condition for members of staff of the mission.
She also said that the building will serve as institution of promoting research on peace and security in Africa.
” Today’s location is another testimony in helping to bring about positive peace in Africa by establishing institutions and structures that will help to provide peace, and security research as well as impart the right knowledge, attitudes and values for sustainable peace and harmony across Africa.
” Because, most countries on the continent are going through trying times characterised by conflicts that tend to reverse the gains of our independence and development.
” Recent examples in Mozambique, Kenya and Sudan crisis, shows how fragile nations can exploit in our faces which we fail to act on the warning signals.
”Sadly, as a result of this conflicts our sisters first ladies in Mali and Chad have become Widows by the direct and indirect consequences of these conflicts” she said.
The first lady therefore urged leaders across the continent to make efforts towards strengthen mechanisms that guarantee peace.
”Our leaders in peace building, mediation, conflict resolution, and post conflict reconstruction.
”I am happy to report that we signed a Memorandum of Understanding with the Africa Union to enable us collaborate on our mission to promote peace in Africa.
She said, the edifice has six meeting rooms that were named after notable African leaders and a two hundred and fifty (250) seater capacity auditorium.
Also speaking at the event, the former first lady of Malawi, Joyce Banda, urged African leaders to create job opportunities for the youths in other to reduce the rate of youth restiveness which in most times result to armed conflict on the continent.
Banda therefore called for African leaders to pragmatic efforts towards reviving their state economy to avoid exodus of Africans into Europe searching for greener pasture.
Banda explained that, most of the social and economic crisis around Africa was cause by the negative effect of climate change.
She therefore expressed the need for leaders in Africa to canvass for justice against the devastating impact climate change.
“The time has come for Africa to seek for climate justice from those who cause this climate change“ she said.
She therefore urged African first ladies to unite towards preventing food insecurity, climate change and ensure peace building to violent conflict against women and children in Africa.
On his part, Mr Mohamed Ibn Chambas, the African Union High Representative on Silencing the Guns, expressed optimism that, the new AFLPM Headquarters will help in preventing conflict and strengthen peace building initiatives on the continent.
Most of the dignitaries who spoke at the event, expressed appreciation to the first lady of Nigeria for her commitment towards building a befitting edifice for the African first ladies.
The event was attended by former and serving African first ladies as well as the wife of Vice President Yemi Osinbajo and the wife of the President-Elect Sen. Oluremi Tinubu