World Peace Day: LASG to foster peace by promoting green environment

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…set to fund school fees of poor with waste bottles.

…30, 469 ADR cases handled, 799.4m recovered in 2019 by CMC.

By Moses Adeniyi

The Lagos State Government through the Citizens’ Mediation Centre (CMC) an Agency of the State’s Ministry of Justice, has declared its agenda of enhancing  peace in communities through promoting the culture of green environment for healthy living.

This was made known at a press briefing held at the State Secretariat, on Teusday to commemorate the Year 2019 International Day of Peace in Lagos State.

Briefing press men, the Attorney General/Commissioner for Justice, Mr. Moyo Onigbanjo, SAN, represented by the State’s Director of Civil Litigation, Mr. Saheed Quadri,  pointed out the need to ensure peace by promoting the culture of giving mild treatment to the environment.

He said that enlightening people on how to treat the environment in friendly manner, will mitigate against prevalent rate of conflicts and crimes in communities.

“Teaching the people to treat the environment in a friendly way will reduce conflict, crimes and truancy in our communities, consequently reducing litigation and the amount of tax payers money used in funding them.

“Adopting this strategy for pursuing peace rather than intervening when crimes might have been committed will set Lagos State in the position of a pacesetter for other States to emulate.” Onigbanjo said.

He further stressed the commitment of the Government  to promoting  amicable disputes and conflict resolution, stating that the interest of the State in the “promotion of peaceful and harmonious co-existence is unshaken.”

Speaking on the urgency of addressing environmental degradation, the Commissioner said that the United Nations Sustainable Development Goal 13, which hinges on the need to take urgent action to combat climate change and its impacts, “is a call for immediate action by all to lower greenhouse emissions, build resilience and improve education on climate change.”

He mentioned that the theme for this year’s United Nations’ International day of Peace entitled “Climate Action for Peace: Clear Blue Skies”, draws attention to Climate Change as a threat to International peace and security.

He said, “National disasters, conflicts, food insecurity, growing tension over resources and mass movement of people are all as a result of climate change.

“This year’s theme seeks to draw attention of government, policy makers, stakeholders and citizens to the importance of combatting climate change as a way to protect and promote peace throughout the world.

“Desertification, flooding, pollution of the air, land and sea are some of the adverse effects of the harsh treatment of the environment. These as a result lead to the displacement of families, loss of lives, loss of sources of income and properties which inevitably lead to unavoidable conflict.”

He added that, “sensitising and directing the attention of government and the public to dangers inherent in the abuse of the environment will go a long way in nipping these abuses in the bud and stimulate government and the people to proffer workable solution.”

The Commissioner said, “the Lagos State Citizens Mediation Centre (CMC), an agency of government that promotes peace in Lagos State, has always is joining the United Nations to commemorate this day.”

Other activities earmarked to further commemorate the 2019 International Day of Peace in Lagos, includes a “Tree planting Day” scheduled to hold on Friday this week, at the Gani Fawehinmi Park, Ojota.

According to the Commissioner, the Governor of Lagos State, Mr. Babajide Sanwo-Olu and other members of the Lagos State Executive councils and top government officials will at the occasion lead by example and indicate their commitment to the Green Lagos Project by planting trees.

The Celebration is scheduled to continue with the “Waste to Wealth Programme” which will be held at the CMC Head Office, Alausa, Ikeja on the same day.

For the “Waste to Wealth Programme”, the Agency will be exchanging a huge collection of used plastic bottles to recycling companies at a cost, and the proceeds will be handed over to less privileged pupils to cater for their school fees.

Speaking on this the Commissioner said “This will serve as an example for the public to realize the economic values of recyclable waste and encourage them to adopt the business as an economic palliative to reduce tension arising from lack of finances in the family.”

He expressed gratitude to the Governor of Lagos State, Mr Olusola Sanwo-Olu; for his exemplary leadership role and unflinching support towards the promotion of peace as depicted through his THEMES mandates.

Moreover, it was revealed that the Agency had between January to September this year,  handled a total of 30, 467 mediation cases, out of which 1, 030 have been resolved.

He added further that the Centre have been able to recover  a sum of about  N799.4 million from cases handled.

The Citizens’ Mediation Centre (CMC) is an initiative of the Lagos State Government under the Ministry of Justice.

To assist in decongesting prisons and court litigations, the Centre provides alternative dispute resolution (ADR) services free of charge by use of mediation, thus enabling indigent residents of Lagos State have prompt access to justice irrespective of tribe, religion or financial capacity.

Areas of jurisdiction covered by the Centre include settlement of disputes relating to Landlords/Tenants, Employers and Employees disputes, Family Matters (including marital disputes, Child Custody etc.).

Others are Property Inheritance, Land Matters, Monetary Claims, Local relationships and Commercial disputes.

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