The IGAD Centre of Excellence for Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (ICEPCVE) will next week hold a Regional Media Influencers’ Forum on countering violent extremists narratives on Digital Spaces.
The conference which will take place from June 5-7, will be be attended by various media influencers from Djibouti, Ethiopia, Kenya, Somalia, Sudan, South Sudan and Uganda with large social media following.
ICEPCVE seeks to promote knowledge sharing, best practices and enhancing cooperation amongst key stakeholders in the field of Preventing and Countering Violent Extremism (PCVE).
“The Centre recognizes that given the increasing connectedness, the social media spaces offer, it is crucial that the fight against violent extremism shift ls to digital spaces. Media Influencers often help to shape perceptions and alter attitudes of vulnerable individuals including those considering joining Extremists’ organizations,” says ICEPCVE.
“There is need to augment capacities of the media influencers to be able to recognize the violent extremists’ ideologies on the online platforms and the best strategies to apply to effectively undermine violent extremists’ ideologies,” adds the Centre.
ICEPCVE on Wednesday concluded a 3-day workshop of religious leaders from the IGAD region on a strategic communications aimed developing unifying messages to counter violent Extremism. The workshop was enabled by support from the European Union Trust Fund.
During the workshop, Dr. Martha Njiiri, the Head of Strategic Communications Unit took the religious leaders through the importance of Public Services Announcements (PSAs) in Countering Violent Extremism Narratives, whereas Muhammad Ibrahim, the ICEPCVE Deputy Director engaged them on the the violent extremism threat including the statistics informing the threat as per the Centre’s database.
The religious leaders also brainstormed on the why strategic communications are critical in countering violent extremism and how to effectively integrate them to undermine violent extremists ideologies.
During the workshop, Rachel Mpirirwe, a Programme Officer facilitated the session on Gender equality and Religion particularly on understanding awareness and dialogue on issues related to gender equality, inclusivity and religious perspectives.
Officially inaugurated in April 2018, the ICEPCVE, the premier P/CVE institution on the African continent, was established to promote the sharing of good practices and lessons learnt from initiatives to prevent and counter violent extremism in the East and Horn of Africa region and to bring together state and non-state actors involved in P/CVE work to ensure an inclusive and holistic approach, as indicated on its website.
The Centre collaborates with partners in strengthening the capacity of communities at risk of radicalization.