President Peter Mutharika has spoken of the need for Malawi to preserve peace and keep shinning as a world ambassador of peace.
Speaking in Lilongwe when he launched the National Peace Policy and commemorations on the International Peace Day, Mutharika emphasized that it is everybody’s responsibility to safeguard the peace the country is enjoying.
“We should never take peace for granted. It takes a highest sense of responsibility and respect for others to keep peace with one another.
“As long as we are human there will always be conflict. We need to be proactive in strengthening and safeguarding this peace by among others avoiding provoking each other and properly managing conflicts among us,” he said.
Mutharika further urged the nation including the media to be responsible particularly on what they post on social media adding that war in Rwanda began because of a radio station.
He described the launch of the policy as a sign that Malawi is moving in the right direction in as far as the promotion of peace is concerned.
Among others the policy requires that Malawi creates a Peace Commission that will guide people in advancing peace. Mutharika has since called for an all inclusive commission.
The Malawi leader also directed the Ministry of Information and Civic Education to publicize the policy and make sure it is translated in all vernacular languages.
Speaking earlier, Principal Secretary for Industry, Trade and Tourism, Cliff Chiunda said following the launch, district peace committees will be established in all districts of the country.
He indicated that community members, people with disabilities, traditional and religious leaders as well as women and the youth will be included in the peace commissions.
United Nations Development Programme (UNDP) resident representative Claire Medina hailed Malawi for not seeing large armed conflicts in years.
However, she indicated that absence of war does not mean that the country is enjoying absolute peace as there are other conflicts such as political tensions, gender inequalities and marginalization of the poor which need to be looked at.
She hinted that the policy will help reaffirm Malawi’s place in the world as an envoy of peace and it signals a commitment to achieve the UN Sustainable development goal 16 which promotes peace and inclusiveness in societies.
The rest of the world commemorated International Day of Peace on September 21 but Malawi planned to commemorate the day together with the policy launch.
The day was commemorated under the theme ‘Together for peace. Unity in diversity.”