Gambari urges Nigerians to shun hate speech
From: MAGNUS EZE, Abuja
A former Nigerian Permanent Representative to the United Nations, Prof. Ibrahim Gambari, has appealed to Nigerians to shun hate speech, describing the trend in recent times as alarming.
Delivering a keynote on the topic “Enhancing global partnership for promoting peace, security, democracy and development in Africa,” at the annual Diplomatic and Executive Night, held in Abuja, Gambari said the ultimate objective was to promote human security.
He admonished Nigerians to work assiduously to control hate speech, saying that it has had serious consequences on the continent as it promotes violent extremism and conflicts.
Gambari further noted that it was because of the dangerous implications that his foundation has continued to carry out campaign against hate speech.
He said “We know that the right of free speech is entrenched in constitution all over the world including my own country, but we should all recognize upfront that this is a slogan that hate speech is not free speech.
“Hate speech is not free speech because hate speech has serious consequences, I know because I was in the Security Council in 1994 representing my country during the genocide in Rwanda and it began in many ways and was exacerbated by hate speech. Hate speech is adding fuel to fire of violet extremism in Africa and it is on record that the continent has indeed paid huge prices and continues to pay for the horrendous effect of violent extremism, violent conflict and other forms of unrest in the continent.”
Even as the diplomat agreed that partnership was very critical to peace, security, democracy and development, he however, posited that Africa must evolve African solution to her problems.
He described as a positive development the efforts of the European Union and the United States to jointly address issues of violent extremism, migration; peace and security development as issues of common concern, with African leaders and the African Union.
“However, having said that, it is still the Africans that have to solve their own problems. With all due respect, nobody can love Africans more than they love themselves, and that is why Africans have by themselves advocated African solution to African problems,” Gambari stated.