Revelations And Discoveries: New Perpetrators Listings For Potential War And Economic Crimes Prosecutions In Liberia


By Jerome J. Verdier, Sr.
Contributing Writer

The Perspective
Atlanta, Georgia
July 14, 2017

                  

 

Washington D.C
United States of America
July 1, 2017

“As a nation and people, we must confront deeply-rooted evil in our society. Otherwise, evil men and women will feel comfortable and victorious; impunity will take roots and becomes entrenched in the moral fabric of our perverse society which will lose its godly nature and blinded to the truth, evil will become indistinguishable from good.”

                                                Cllr Jerome J. Verdier, Sr
Chairman, the erstwhile Truth & Reconciliation Commission of Liberia (TRC)

 

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BACKGROUND

The work of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Liberia (TRC), ended in 2009 with the Commission making recommendations to the Government of the Republic of Liberia contained in a comprehensive report in compliance with relevant provisions of the TRC Act.

The Report, among other things recommended several measures to redress the dysfunctions of the war, its root causes and justice and other mechanisms to address the issues of accountability and impunity and victim’s vulnerability and the deep rooted divide in the Liberian society, socio- economic and political inequalities and the issues of equal participation, democracy, corruption and nepotism, which historically has been a conflict flash point constituting the bedrock of the root cause of violent conflicts and war in Liberia.

Also, in compliance with the TRC Act, the TRC went further to recommend continuing investigations into economic and war crimes that the Commission could not complete owing to limited resources and time. And because the Government of Liberia was unwilling to extend the tenure of the Commission and finance its work beyond the initial six-months extension granted the commission to write and complete its reporting process.

Regrettable, also is the lack of progress on implementation of any of the recommendations of the Commission nearly ten years after its work was completed and Report submitted.
Under the TRC Act, the Independent Human rights Commission (IHRCL) was to inherit the work of the TRC and the civil society in Liberia, ECOWAS, and the international community were deemed moral guarantors of the TRC Process, including implementation of the recommendations of the Commission.

The IHRCL became dysfunctional and the Government of Liberia has failed to take measures to implement the TRC Recommendations and fulfil its obligations under international law to prosecute for war crimes committed in the territories of Liberia.

The failure of the Liberian Government to take actions to administer justice in Liberia leaves the international community with the purview to fill in the gap and administer justice to the people of Liberia in keeping with international law. In this view, the international community remains seized of the TRC Process and its Chairman, Cllr Jerome J. Verdier, Sr has also remain seized of the process, collaborating with international justice and human rights actors to ensure the full implementation of all the Recommendations of the TRC.

The Role of Civil Society