Bocanda, Côte d’Ivoire, Designated as an HWPL Peace City
On May 9th, an event was held in Côte d’Ivoire to designate Bocanda as the “HWPL City of Peace.” The event was sponsored by the Ministry of Reconciliation and Bocanda City Government of Côte d’Ivoire and there were about 330 people in attendance, including H.E. Kouadio Konan Bertin, the Minister of Ministry of Reconciliation, Mr. Kramo Kouassi, the Mayor of Bokanda, Prefecture of Bocanda, ethnic leaders, religious leaders, representatives of civic groups and youth groups, and the press.
In Côte d’Ivoire, ethnic conflicts within countries are rampant enough to adopt achieving ethnic harmony as a national policy. Political conflicts are also so severe that bloodshed occurs every election season.
Bocanda City in Côte d’Ivoire, however, was the only city that resolved ethnic conflicts peacefully. Therefore, HWPL designated Bocanda City as the “HWPL City of Peace” to make it an exemplary case for peacefully resolving conflicts occurring in various regions in Côte d’Ivoire and spreading peace culture nationwide.
H.E. Kouadio Konan Bertin, the Minister of the Ministry of Reconciliation said, “We have to make sure that our everyday behavior helps and contributes to maintaining this peace because Bocanda wants to deserve this appellation of the city of peace. We’ve seen over the past two years, over the past few months, that a new wind has been blowing through our country—a wind of peace, a wind of development. That presupposes that together we continue to cultivate a climate of peace. We create a behavior of peace, making a powerful appeal for everyone to behave peacefully for the peace and development of Côte d’Ivoire.”
Mr. Kramo Kouassi, the Mayor of Bocanda City said, “As a city of peace, Bocanda will become a capital city of peacemaking efforts for ethnic harmony in Côte d’Ivoire. We will immediately sign a partnership with HWPL and participate in peace activities.”
As Mr. Kramo Kouassi, the Mayor of Bocanda City, mentioned, Bocanda City signed an MOU with HWPL and promised to cooperate in peace initiatives such as HWPL Peace Education, Youth Engagement & Peacebuilding Working Group (YEPW), and dialogues for peace and coexistence of various ethnic groups. The Ministry of Reconciliation has also decided to actively support these peace initiatives. In addition, in June, HWPL and Bocanda City will complete an erection of the first HWPL peace monument in Côte d’Ivoire together.