ICMC to partner with the Nigerian Police Force in peacebuilding and Alternative Dispute Resolution

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On the 23rd day of February 2022, The President, Agada John Elachi, Ph.D. FICMC, FCIArb (UK) led a delegation to the office of the Inspector General of Police, Usman Baba Alkali. The delegation comprised of past president Chief (Dr.) Paddy Njoku, Chief Emeka Obegolu, SAN, Registrar, Aisha Ado Abdullahi, Chairperson, ICMC Abuja branch Dr. Rosemary Chikwendu, Usman Ogwu Sule, SAN, Mr. Robert Idoko, Hajiya Jamila Salik and Mercy Akpor.

The President thanked the IGP of Police for receiving the delegation of ICMC and introduced the Institute to the IGP. He explained the services offered by ICMC and the milestones reached in its time of existence as an institute. He also mentioned areas of possible partnership and collaboration between the Nigeria Police Force and the Institute.

With regards to trainings, he noted that ICMC can provide training on mediation and conciliation skills for Force community relations officers across the nation adding that acquiring these skills will help to improve institutional performance for the Nigerian Police Force and equip them with skills to engage with the community better. Dr. Agada John Elachi advocated the use of verbal judo by officers of the Nigeria Police which is a de-escalation strategy to mitigate the conflict situations.

The President also noted that the rate of gender-based violence/spousal abuse has been reported to be on the high and that this is usually downplayed by describing spousal issues as family disputes which eventually may lead to loss of life of one of the parties. A special training on family mediation will help broaden the scope for officers and assist them in promoting and advocating mutually beneficial solutions for all parties involved when dealing with such complaints.

The President stated further that a further collaboration proposed by the Institute is the provision for the various police formations programmes across the country such as seminars for its rank and file which is held weekly. The President announced ICMC branches will provide the resource persons for such interaction which will be undertaken at no cost to the Nigerian Police Force. This will form part of the Institutes’ corporate social responsibility (CSR).

Other possible area of a strategic partnership that the President of ICMC mentioned is the provision of pre, during and post elections peacebuilding activities in partnership with the Nigeria Police Force. With the 2023 general elections approaching, workshops, seminars, and sensitization campaigns on peaceful co-existence and tolerance targeted at community leadership, peace actors and stakeholders around the country would go a long way to promote peace in the polity.

The President further stated that the Institute is willing to put the Volunteer Mediator Scheme (VMS) platform at the use of the Nigeria Police for referral of cases, particularly family-related and gender/children issues to various ICMC branches where ICMC trained Mediators will assist disputing parties reach a settlement.

The IGP thanked the President and the entire delegation of ICMC for the visit. He noted that the points raised by the President are valid especially because peaceful co-existence is a necessity in society. He added further that with regards to collaborations on training and capacity development, the Nigerian Police force is willing to partner with ICMC and he is also available to serve as a resource person at such training. He also emphasized that capacity development is necessary for institutional performance; training and knowledge is very useful and his office is ready to provide whatever is necessary for this partnership to be achieved.

He stated further that he looked forward to receiving a comprehensive proposal from the Institute on the proposed areas of partnership and assured the delegation that when the proposal is received, he shall assign the relevant officers and units to work with the Institute to actualize the objectives of the proposal.

The visit ended with an exchange of contact details, presentation of institutional gifts and group photographs.

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