Why is there more hatred and violence in a world that has Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and various social media and messaging applications and online communities?
Why has hatred and violence dominated a world connected by apps and services that use peaceful elements like “friends”, “followers”, “likes”, “favourites” “share”, “memories” and so on?
It is ironical! This irony must be turned around! Social media must do its job of creating peace! This is the position of the International Peace Youth Group (IPYG) and International Women’s Peace Group (IWPG). Members of these groups want Nigerians and indeed the rest of the world to join the peace cause.
At a forum organised by the groups at the University of Ibadan, recently, a theme: “Using the media to promote world peace” was explored.
One of the speakers, Mr. Bisi Oladele, Bureau Head of the Nation newspaper in Ibadan, stressed at the forum that using social media to propagate peace especially in this new age of information technology will help to reach out to heterogeneous audience.
He pointed out that since mass media has blended with the social media, reportage should be used to enlighten the public because violent acts surge when there is a lack of understanding of government policies.
He charged media practitioners to learn the act of promoting peace through timely and relevant contents and also doing away with contents that can instigate hatred or better still, black out those contents capable of stirring violence.
But outside social media use, is direct inter-personal and physical interactions. Another speaker, Mrs. Ibe Ezime, said men and women are peace vessels, but stressed that women have more roles to play. She said that the role of motherhood in promoting peace in the society cannot be over-emphasized.
She said the citizens and authorities must work to eradicate violence against women and other acts of violence.
Akinola Fatoyinbo from All Nigeria United Nation’s Student and Youth Association, ANUNSA, supported MRs Ezime’s position but stressed that governments at all levels to make education free and provide for the needs of their citizens as condition to stem the menace of violence in the society.
He added that peace can be promoted by organizing world peace advocacy programs, tackling hazards associated to man’s activities and speaking and working against violence against women and other acts of violence.