If I Were A President In Somalia, I Would Do The Following For Peace:-

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  1. Learning from the long 25 years of war, civil unrest and bloodshed, I would help build communities based on honesty, respect and compassion.
  2. I would appoint a Minister for Peace.
  3. I would teach my people that conflict is necessary in life and that it doesn’t always have to be negative and disastrous. We have to face conflict creatively not violently.
  4. I would educate my people and make them understand, through examples that speak a visual language, that nowhere in the world is conflict absent. And that it is not the lack of conflict which measures peace, but the ability to resolve conflict non-violently.
  5. I would build on the ability of my people to resolve conflict non-violently through training in peace building, non-violence and conflict transformation. I would design the training tools myself and do it in such a way that even the most illiterate would follow and understand.
  6. I would achieve this by making lessons in peace building skills, non-violence and conflict transformation compulsory in the national curriculum from kindergarten to tertiary education.
  7. I would remind my people that as Somalis we are good in the use of poetry and humor and to use these to our benefit for peace.
  8. I would lead by example. I would encourage my people to read and write. To express themselves through the power of the written word and through expressive art.
  9. I would elaborate that just as conflict cannot be resolved with violence, peace cannot be kept by force and that an eye for an eye will not always make one a winner. It would leave many of our people blind and impaired.
  10. I would encourage (academic) research in peace and conflict in Somalia. What is working for us peacefully? I would reward the most innovative researchers and research programs.
  11. I would create a National Love and Forgiveness Day to encourage my people to annually commemorate peace in the Somali way.
  12. I would appoint Peace Ambassadors in communities and have monthly meetings with local communities about how we can increase the peace together. I would call them Community Peace Dialogues.
  13. I would burn all fire arms – small, medium and big.
  14. I would create National Peace Awards to honor and reward the best Somali Peace builder/journalist for their peaceful activism/coverage.
  15. I would appoint a Minister for Conflict Transformation and Reconciliation
  16. I would discourage tribalism and encourage brotherhood. I would emphasize on our commonalities. I would re-introduce Somali concepts such as walaaltinimo. Somaalinimo. Gobannimo. Waddaninimo. Kalgacal. Kal iyo laab. Jaceyl.
  17. I would encourage women to take up key leadership positions and appoint them as Ministers, Vice Ministers and Ambassadors.
  18. I would reach out to the youth and keep them busy with youth and cultural programs/activities that encourage learning, reflection, growth, patriotism and civic engagement. I would encourage them to go on regional exchange programs/study tour/ visits.
  19. I would ask communities to build trees of peace. A peace tree outside every house providing shade and more.
  20. I would emphasize and re-emphasize on national reading of The Holy Quran, especially chapters that encourage brotherhood, peace building and compassion, love and peaceful co-existence.
  21. I would make conflict transformation a compulsory crosscutting issue in all development/humanitarian projects.
  22. I would appoint a Minister for Compassion and Love.
  23. I would encourage neighbors to reach out for each other and to work together for common purpose because love liberates. Love empowers.
  24. I would teach my people to listen carefully to others before making judgments.
  25. I would demonstrate how to compassionately listen to one another and how to communicate respect to another.
  26. I would advise my people to base their positions on truth and not on clan favoritism/tribalism. I would encourage my people to not side with their brother whom they know is wrong. And to be willing to experience discomfort for standing up for what is important and right.
  27. I would reiterate that a position based on truth will give freedom and would bring people closer to each other and closer to God.
  28. I would advice my people to learn to trust their brothers and to be less suspicious, less fearing. To be patient and persistent in doing good.
  29. I would support cultural programs and literary festivals. I would have posters and murals on public places displaying Somali art and poetry of peace and love. I would have regular radio peace programs.
  30. I would regularly tell my people that I love them.

\”Peace is not something we can only wish for. It’s something we make. Something we do. Something we are. And is something we give away\”. R. Fulghum

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