Mr. Joseph Lengmang, PPBA boss (second from left) with other stakeholders at a peace dialogue, Tuesday.

The Plateau State Peace Building Agency says last week's post-election tensions in Jos could have escalated but for the gradual maturity of citizens over violence.

Mr. Osaretin Imahirebor, INEC Official speaking at the forum
Mr. Joseph Lengmang, the agency's Director General said, Thursday that the ability of citizens to maintain peace in amid deep electoral grievances shows that the State has learned enough from its past.

"The ability of Plateau people to keep the tensions arising from the delays in announcing election results in Jos North show that we have learned and grown from our violent past," Mr. Lengmang said.

The PPBA boss, however, believes more needs to be done to further peace in the State.

"If we don't do enough, we stand the risk of losing all of us," he said.

Consequently, the agency according to him is holding a series of engagements with stakeholders in the state towards finding lasting solutions to violent conflicts.

Cross section of participants at the meeting

Lengmang was speaking at one of the said forums on Tuesday tagged "Dialogue session with critical stakeholders on preventing election violence in Jos North LGA of Plateau State" where he insisted, it is cheaper to prevent than managing violence.

This is the third time the agency is organizing such forums targeting Jos North, one of the State's renowned conflict flashpoints.

The United States Agency for International Development is impressed with the idea of peace building among communities, which is the PPBA's key mandate.

USAID which is the PPBA's main partner believes it is more beneficial to engage stakeholders in peace dialogues than employ military approaches to conflict resolution.

"By the time we begin to invest more in peacebuilding than security, we will stabilize," USAID's representative at the Tuesday stakeholders meeting in Jos, Dr. Chris Kwaja said.

Dr. Kwaja, however, called for sufficient funding for the agency to enable it to carry out its mandate.