The Bong Pen-Pen Peace Network (PPPN) on Wednesday, July 26, defeated the Liberia National Police (LNP) (scores) on the Lutheran sports pitch in a post-match penalty climaxing a week-long peace sports tournament in Totota, Bong County.
Other activities included bag jumping, chess, checker, Ludo and soccer and they brought together Bong, Nimba and Margibi Police teams and the Motorcyclists’ soccer teams from the three counties.
The project was hosted in collaboration with the Montserrado County PPPN with support from PURDUE Peace Project (PURDUE Liberal Arts).
They Nimba, Bong, and Margibi PPPN conducted the confidence building of peace messages’ week with the theme, “Focusing on Bridging Elections Tension and Conflict; Under Its Peaceful Presidential Election Project.”
The Purdue Peace Project (PPP), according to the country director, Grace Yeah Yeanay, convenes every day to help citizens address immediate threats of violence in their communities.
“The PPP is a university-based political violence prevention initiative that does peace-building work in fragile states and conducts research to advance knowledge about political violence prevention at the local, and community level,” Ms. Yeanay said.
Each participating team received a certificate and a cash prize of L$2,000, while the first and second winners of the soccer tournament walked away with a set of jersey, one football, and L$2,000.
Two golden trophies were symbolically awarded to the first and second winners of the soccer matches for exhibition had inscriptions: “Violence-free Election-2017.”
“By your participation, you are all peace ambassadors for PPP to ensure that the upcoming elections are conducted under a peaceful atmosphere,” Ms Yeanay told the gathering.
Similar tourneys were held in Margibi from July 13-15 and Nimba July 17-19. At the Totota event, the local election magistrate, Barsee Kpangai took the official kick off at the beginning of the games.
The PPP supported peace initiative has been working on activities, including sports to encourage dialogue among pen-pen riders and the LNP, and other citizens before, during and after the October elections.
In 2013, a group of motorbike riders or the Pen-Pen riders formed a local peace committee, called the PPPN, to promote peace in the country. Since September 2015, the PPPN, in support of the Purdue Peace Project, has planned and implemented campaigns aimed at promoting peace in their communities.