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Peace Commission Receives IT Equipment from AU Commission

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Peace Commission Receives IT Equipment from AU Commission

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By Abubakarr Harding

In bid to set up an early warning situation room that will effectively monitor peculiar issues that threaten governance, security and development in the country, the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ), through the African Union Commission Peace and Security Department has donated IT equipment worth millions of Leones to the Independent Commission for Peace  and National Cohesion Sierra Leone (ICPNC).

The handing over ceremony was held at the Peace Commission Building on Lamina Sankoh Street in Freetown.

In her address, Executive Secretary of the Independent Commission for Peace and National Cohesion (ICPNC ), Hawa Sally Samai, stated that the ceremony is to display their partnership and to show how much they are getting ready in terms of election preparedness and also how far they have gone with their mandate and strategic plans in terms of setting up systems and structures to promote sustainable peace and national cohesion in Sierra Leone.

She said the donated items will help them in strategizing their early warning and responsive terms for it to become effective and efficient for the good and benefit of Sierra Leone and they are also there to capacitate them in terms of training their technical team so that they would be able to use the systems.

The Executive Secretary applauded GIZ and the African Union Commission Peace and Security for the donation of IT equipment so that they can be able to visually see their activities in the situation room and also promise to send photos to their partners after setting it up.

She also used the opportunity to thank NATCA for giving the Commission a toll free line which is 898 for their operation.

The Coordinator, Secretariat of  Special Envoys, High Representative and Panel of Wives, Department of Political Affairs, Peace and Security, African Union Commission, Mfrekeobang Ukpanah,  stated that it is their pleasure to provide support to the Independent Commission for Peace and National Cohesion towards striking its capacity to systematically collect information, analyze information and begin to work towards responding to issues that will threaten the peace, security and stability within Sierra Leone.

She added that within that framework this is why the AU is providing this support, stating that the AU underscores the primary mandate for the promotion of good governance, peace security and stability, the rest of member States are there to accompany the process.

As they underscore that locally, driven initiatives to promote peace are what should be supported for its sustainability.

“It is easier to come in and provide support but not easier to run the technical or day to day policy and programmatic intervention, that is why the Commission would be accompanied through the process.

The team that would be coming from the African Union has provided same support to a lot of other members’ States on the continent, the idea is to build capacities for early waning and early response,” she maintained.

According to MsUkpanah the equipment donated which includes; all in one stationary printer, one television, one high power gigabyte router, one desktop and laptop as they will be used to monitor the day to day running of issues within the country.

The Director of Finance and Administration at Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit(GIZ), Evance Mundia, said it is an honor for GIZ to be part – albeit from the distance of this special occasion of the handing over of IT equipment required for the establishment of the situation room at the Independent Commission for Peace and National Cohesion in Sierra Leone.

He added that within the framework of the GlZ, AU, APSA support program, commissioned by the German Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development, they will support the implementation of AU instruments in its member states.

As today’s handover is made in the framework of the ongoing support to establish and strengthen national infrastructures for peace in order to enhance the capacity of AU member States for structural conflict prevention, adding that rather than letting conflicts build and destabilize countries, the focus on conflict prevention is necessary to move away from the constant management of conflicts and wars to silencing the guns completely-an aspiration of the AU and its member states.

He further pointed out that through the donated IT equipment, Sierra Leone’s National Commission for Peace will establish a situation room which will monitor and identify potential risks to peace and security.

Mundia concluded by stating that it gives them great pleasure to hand over the equipment to the Commission and expressed optimism that the items will be used for the greater purpose of early warning.

Closing the ceremony was the official handing over of the items by the Coordinator, Secretariat of  Special Envoys, High Representative and Panel of Wives Department of Political Affairs, Peace and Security, African Union Commission, Mfrekeobang Ukpanah to the Executive Secretary of the Independent Commission for Peace and National Cohesion (ICPNC ), Hawa Sally Samai.

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