It is in this symbolic city of Luena, in the province of Moxico, where the "Stop the fire" ending the Angolan civil war was signed in February 2002, that the Eduardo dos Santos Foundation (FESA) and UNESCO held an international conference on "Preventing violence and promoting the culture of peace during an election period in Africa".
The main speakers at the conference, attended by about five hundred people, were Angolan officials such as Minister of Education, Pinda Simão, Minister of Youth and Sports, Mr. Albino da Conceicao José and the Ambassador, Permanent Delegate of Angola to UNESCO, His Excellency Diekumpuna Sita José, and a few members of the Network of Foundations and Research Institutions for the Promotion of the Culture of Peace in Africa and of the Pan-African Youth Network for the Culture of Peace.
At the opening ceremony, the Minister of Education reaffirmed the importance of the culture of peace as the best tool to prevent violence in Africa and ensure a healthy coexistence between citizens of different regions and cultures.
The Representative of the Assistant Director-General for Africa at UNESCO, Mr. Loïtéohin Félix Yé, Director of the Yaoundé Regional Office (Cameroon) and Representative of UNESCO in Central Africa, the occasion for the exemplary leadership of Angola in promoting the culture of peace in Africa.
"Peace is a real and long process that involves everyone without exception.This conference is a lever for the promotion and consolidation of peace with young people for the prosperity of Angola, Africa, of the world, "said the President of the National Council of Angolan Youth and member of PAYNCOP, Antonio Tiagao Mateus.
The conference, which was organized around two round tables, provided an opportunity for speakers to present the actions taken by their institutions in their different countries of origin in the field of conflict prevention during an election period and to discuss to bring all parties involved to abstain from all acts likely to create political and inter-community tensions, and to favor actions that promote the peaceful conduct of electoral processes. At the end of the discussions, several recommendations were made with a view to preventing pre- and post-election violence in Africa.
The conference concluded with the official launch in Angola of the Youth Campaign for the Culture of Peace in Central Africa "Different Words, One Language: Peace"; campaign launched on July 9, 2016 in Gabon, on the initiative of the Pan-African Network of Youth for the Culture of Peace (PAYNCOP). The objective of the Campaign is two-fold: media coverage of the notion of "culture of peace" in order to generate both public awareness and reaction in general; and the role of youth in the building and consolidation of peace and non-violence on a daily basis.
The conference was also the opportunity, the following day, December 13, of two parallel meetings of the Network of Foundations and Research Institutions for the Promotion of the Culture of Peace in Africa and the Pan-African Network for Peace.
Source: UNESCO Africa Department