THE TRUTH AND RECONCILIATION COMMISSION OF LIBERIA (TRC) have announced the release and publication of its final reports after several weeks of editing and technical work leading to its publication. The report which is an edited version of the "TRC FINAL REPORT, VOLUME II, CONSOLIDATED REPORT(UNEDITED)" was released on June 30, 2009. Atleast 1,500 copies of the report is now in print, courtesy of funding provided by the UNDP.
The report, containing twenty-one (21) chapters, and approximately 1,500 pages in all is published in three volumes as follows:
Volume I: Preliminary Report , presented to the Government of Liberia December 20, 2008;
Volume II: Consolidated Final Report, presented to the Government of Liberia June 29, 2009;
Volume III: Appendices Containing thirteen (13) titles of supplemental and specialized reports.
Volume IV: Transcripts Containing ten thousand pages of testimonies from TRC witnesses during the Survivors' Hearings, Thematic and Institutional Hearings and the TRC Diaspora Hearings, remains unpublished.
According to a TRC press release issued December 1, 2009 in Monrovia, the report provides a historical analysis of the conflict in Liberia, the root causes of the conflict and 142 pieces of recommendations intended to redress Liberia's legacy of conflict, dysfunction, massive human rights violations and promote national peace, unity and reconciliation.
In all, the report includes eight (8) recommendations for public sanctions and prosecution combined and another eight (8) peieces of recommendations relating to economic crimes. The remaining total of 126 recommendations relate to a wide range of public interest issues including public integrity, corruption, human rights, economic empowerment, good governance, national identity and reparation, amongst others intended to resolve past conflicts as part of a national progression towards lasting peace and reconciliation.
The Report also contains a list of dead perpetrators, the names, nationalities and probable locations of 102 foreign fighters who operated in Liberia; 26 tables and
5 figures of TRC statistical information; a listing of 116 most notorious perpetrators recommended for prosecution by an Extraordinary Criminal Court and 58 perpetrators recommended for prosecution in the domestic courts of Liberia; public sanctions for 49 persons for their role in suppporting, financially and otherwise, various warring factions. Another 45 persons are recommended for economic crimes prosecution and 54 others recommended for further investigation into their activities related to economic crimes.
The TRC Release furthered that of the over 103,019 former combatants disarmed by the United Nations Mission in Liberia under its demobolization and disarmament programs, the report is recommending that a little over 7,000 face the "Palava Hut Program" as a community reconciliation initiative to build peace at the grass roots level, meaning that of the 103,019 documented perpetrators, 0.169% percent is being recommended for prosecution whilst 6.7% documented perpetrators have been identified to participate in the Palava Hut Program, as would those recommended for economic crimes prosecution and public sanctions on account of their support for various warring factions.
The release signed by TRC media department, quotes the TRC Chairman, Cllr Jerome J Verdier as saying that the report "is dedicated to the evergreen memory of all those who lost their lives during the Liberian conflict, the children of tomorrow and all who dare to hope for a better Liberia". He said the completion of this exercise and the release of the report "marks the rebirth of a new Liberia in which all Liberians irrespective of their roles or expereinces in the past will acknowledge the throes of the bitter past and unite for a peaceful and more prosperous Liberia".
The TRC Release called on Liberians to spare no efforts in working and praying for unity, peace, justice and reconciliation in Liberia while thanking the Almighty God for his benevolence to the nation and its people.
The release concluded that the Report is published on the TRC website at www.trcofliberia.org ,and will be dissiminated locally and internationally. The Commission, through the Release is thanking the government of Liberia, its many partners, stakeholders and the people of Liberia for their support during this national enterprise. The Commission now awaits its formal retirement by the Government of Liberia.
Signed: The TRC Media Department