ANA PCVE is a three-year non-governmental preventing and countering violent extremism programme of the Association of Nigerian Authors. Its objective is to assess, design and deploy education and creative writing (including poetry, fiction and drama) as part of a soft approach to addressing violent extremism in Nigeria.
The programme was created by a Memorandum of Understanding between the Association of Nigerian Authors (ANA) and STRADA Development Initiative. ANA is Nigeria’s umbrella body of writers of poetry, prose and drama comprising over 10,000 members organised around 28 state chapters in the country.
In the period since the September 11 attack on the United States, the international community has seen the rise of global terrorism. The nature of conflict has changed and state versus state conflict is now the exception. At the core of terrorism often lies violent extremism. In dealing with the rise of terrorism and violent extremism, countries have sought to develop frameworks and strategies to meet new challenges. Often than not, these strategies have been militaristic in outlook, overlooking soft means of executing counterterrorism such as culture—literature and the arts.
In March 2014, the Office of the National Security Adviser (ONSA) of Nigeria revealed the Soft Approach to Countering Terrorism, a policy document under the National Counterterrorism Strategy (NACTEST). On 24th December 2015 at the 70th Session of the UN General Assembly, a Plan of Action to Prevent Violent Extremism was adopted which deals extensively with the subject.
In response to the UN Secretary General’s encouragement to member states, the Federal Government of Nigeria, in collaboration with the Nigeria Stability and Reconciliation Programme (NSRP), set out to produce a National Framework and Action Plan to prevent and counter violent extremism in Nigeria. It is expected to be a multi-stakeholder, multi-pronged strategy that involves both government and civil society.
Central to the success of this strategy will be educational projects that address the psychology of violent extremism and terrorism. ANA PCVE is thus a civil society intervention to advocate and explore the use of literature in preventing and countering violent extremism in Nigeria.