HWPL Chairman, Man Hee Lee Peace Advocate 17th Effect in South Africa
The Key to end all wars: the First African World Alliance of Religions’ Peace Summit
Pretoria, South Africa, The world of today is passing through an environment full of violence, tension, injustices, discrimination, and human rights violations. Devastation and atrocities by misrepresented religions and ethnic groups have already taken a dominant position in various parts of the world especially developing countries, threatening the youths who deserve a peaceful life. In light of the religion-related terrorist attacks on young students in various countries in Africa: Nigeria (over 200 schoolgirls were kidnapped); Pakistan (152 dead including 133 children); Kenyan college (at least 147 dead), in order to change and mitigate this widespread phenomenon, South African youths have gathered to combine their enthusiasm to defend the frontiers of peace and non-violence.
The first African World Alliance of Religions’ Peace (WARP) Summit was held on March 30th through 31st, 2015 at the University of South Africa (UNISA), the largest university on the African continent whose notable alumni are Nobel Peace Prize Laureates such as Nelson Mandela, Desmond Tutu, and F. W. de Klerk. The Summit was the African chapter of the WARP Summit which took place in Seoul, South Korea in September 2014 and was hosted by an international peace organization Heavenly Culture, World Peace, Restoration of Light (HWPL) together with its affiliates, International Peace Youth Group (IPYG) and International Women’s Peace Group (IWPG).
Also greatly supported by Department of Home Affairs of South Africa, the University of South Africa (UNISA), African Youth Union (AYU), National Interfaith Council of South Africa (NICSA), and Interfaith Action for Peace in Africa (IFAPA), approximately 1,500 people attended the two-day summit which brought together the world renowned chief justices, ambassadors, African royalties, political leaders, women and youth representatives particularly serving for the Southern African Development Community(SADC) regions to take a pragmatic approach toward peace building and discuss the outcomes of the 2014 WARP Summit in South Korea.
The leading South African religious leaders from various faiths such as Baha’ism, Christianity, Hare Krishna, Sikhism, Rastafari, Judaism, Islam, Karaism, Buddhism, and Hinduism came together to eradicate the religious misunderstandings through this opportunity and move forward to peace and unity.
Chairman of HWPL, Mr. Man Hee Lee spoke about the role of youth in the cessation of wars: “The ones to protect the youth are the youth themselves. When we work together in harmony then that is when we can achieve something great. When all youth gather for peace, all wars will come to an end.” the Chairwoman of IWPG also encouraged women to unite and protect their children. She said “One of the keys to achieve world peace is the power of the women. We have to believe in ourselves and the power we possess.”
Honourable Malusi Gigaba, the Minister of Home Affairs of South Africa, who is the patron of IPYG, Justice Mogoeng Mogoeng, Justice Bess Nkabinde, the Queen mother Molotlegi of Royal Bafokeng, Mahatma Gandhi’s granddaughter Ms Ela Gandhi, Dr. Mathole Motshekga from the National Interfaith Council of South Africa (NISCA), Mr. Mlingone Poswayo of the Bahai faiths, Mr. Mohamed Wadi who represents the Nat Quaran Institute, and Mr. Thulani Tshefuta of the South African Youth Council (SAYC) were in present and all of them delivered speeches respectively.
During his speech, Honourable Malusi Gigaba addressed, “Peace is a pre-condition of development. There can be no doubt that the children are most affected by the ravages of war, either when violence is visited upon them directly or their families – parents, relatives and elder siblings. This conference of the youth on peace is a living testimony that violence, conflict and war are not the natural order of things; that a different future is not only possible, but it is demanded by the youth of Africa today!” He also urged the youths to take the lead in building a peaceful nation. After the event, all participants signed the “Agreement for the Alliance of Religions” and “Enactment of an International Law for the Cessation of War,” a much needed-step for peace.
During their 17th world peace tour, the HWPL peace delegation has visited various regions in South Africa such as Royal Bafokeng Nation, Pretoria, and Cape Town resulting in appointment of May 25th as World Peace Day followed by a ceremony unveiling the “World Peace Summit Memorial” in remembrance of the summit in Korea as well as lives lost and broken in the midst of wars. The African WARP Summit made huge strides by reminding leaders and lawmakers of the global community of their responsibility to protect their citizens and bring the practical solution for enacting and executing an international law to cease all wars.