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“Businesses Must Pay for Peace”

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Mallam Yusuf Ali (SAN) arriving for the occasion. 

A renowned Legal Practitioner and consummate Businessman, Mallam Yusuf Ali, Senior Advocate of Nigeria (SAN) has said that violent conflicts can be prevented where business organizations do not engage in activities that could offset the peace of the society. He said because businesses need a peaceful atmosphere to strive, business owners must pay for peace. This he said in a paper he presented on the ‘Role of Business and Private Citizens in sustaining Africa Peace and Security’. Mallam Yusuf was a special guest of honor at the Book Launch and official unveiling of the WANEP permanent Regional office held in Accra-Ghana.

The legal luminary added that war situations hamper businesses and also provide for predatory exploitation of business opportunities. Mallam Yusuf explained that the goal of business is to make profit but this cannot be possible in a situation of war since violent conflicts disrupt business operations and create opportunities for trouble makers to exploit the situation to their advantage. In the light of this, he therefore advised business owners to commit to funding peace and security projects either as a strategy for providing safer environments for themselves or meeting corporate social responsibility.

The paper drew examples from across Africa, particularly Nigeria, to establish the relationship between business and peace. Highlighting the devastating effects of violent conflicts on business ventures, Mallam Yusuf gave a seven-point agenda of the role of business enterprises in peace and security discourse.

Mallam Yusuf Ali pose with WANEP management team of Executive Director, Mr. Chukwuemeka Eze, Program Director, Mrs. Levinia Addae-Mensah, Finance Manager, Mrs. Gisele Vedogbeton-Dovlo and Administrative Manager, Mrs. Esther Gordon-Mensah

Commenting on his relationship with WANEP, Mallam Yusuf said; “WANEP makes me proud each time I am here. Its work underscores  how non-state actors can build peace in a sustainable manner,” adding that though WANEP is a private initiative, it has achieved so much in preventing and managing conflicts in West Africa”. Mallam Ali demonstrated his commitment to the ideals of the organization with a financial donation in support of the publication and pledged to continue contributing to the growth and development of WANEP.