Friday, December 3, 2010

We Need Peace In Ivory Coast - A Personal Account

I saw on CNN this morning images of looming chaos in Ivory Coast. The army has shut all land, air and sea borders and the citizens are all scampering for safety. No one really knows what havoc is happening in the country that fought a civil war not long ago.

You may think that it is a far away country but it's not when you realise that it is human beings like you and I that inhabit that country.

After posting a prayer for peace in the country on Facebook this morning, and pondering on what next to do, I got into a chat with a friend who expressed shock at the events in Abidjan.

That conversation with Tony brought to fore the urgent need to create awareness about the looming crisis that is an outcome of the presidential elections.

In our chat, Tony, a Nigerian photojournalist who has lived and worked in Abidjan and whose wife hails from that country told me a few things that I have reproduced here by permission.

"Ha, when I thought peace will come back to Cote d`Ivoire. My pastor still lives there and I have been trying to reach him on phone" Tony said.

"Is the phone working" I asked.

"No," he responded. "God please intervene."

"It's serious," I said.

"I have not gotten through," said Tony. "I am still trying. My brother in law is there too. My wife has refused to eat".

"Ol boy you have people there o, I feel ur pains bro".

After a long pause.

"His phone is not going. All the phone calls I am making no one is to be going through. That`s my second home Lolade. I'm confused may God help me", he said.

And so this is the dilemma we face in an increasingly shrinking world.

You may think that Abidjan is far from you and do not care about what may be going on but remember that every human being is family and we need to care about the fate of the world.

For my friends reggae singer Ayouba Karamoko and journalists Kingsley Kobo and Rhokia Kone who live in Abidjan, my prayers are with you and I hope that your country will find peace.

Please sign up for a petition here .

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