Prof. Al-Hassan Conteh, Deputy Dean of African Diplomatic Corps, has underscored the need for peace and reconciliation to promote meaningful growth in the continent of Africa.
Conteh, also Ambassador of Liberia to Nigeria, said this on Tuesday in Abuja.
He said that peace was key for achievement of development in any society.
He decried hate speeches as major contributor to violence and therefore urged that people should desist from such, but embrace peace and reconciliation, to achieve desire goals.
Conteh said, “We should be steadfast in promoting peace and solidarity, because the absence of peace can lead to a lot of things.
“As we draw lessons from that past incidence of conflicts, reconciliation becomes necessary for us in Africa, especially where civil wars took place.”
According to the envoy hate speeches are abusive speeches or writings that can express prejudice against a particular group especially on the basis of race, religion or sexual orientation.
He said that there should be proper sensitisation for people to abhor hate speeches and guard against its potential negative effects, to avoid conflict degeneration.
He urged governments at all levels to create political will to criminalise hate speech in order to achieve national peace and cohesion.
“Absence of peace leads to a lot of things especially conflict; governments must begin to criminalise hate speeches that are fast destroying fabrics of society.”