Child Witness Testimony

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Siah Kortio
Residence: Zwedru
Father's name: Moses Kotio
Mother Name: Evelyn Kotio
Age: 16 years
School: St. Philomena Catholic School

Child Witness: I want to explain what happen to I and my parents during the war in 2003 the MODEL war. MODEL war we were in town here ok one Alex Towah he was here today, he and father say he should rent his land for eight years so after the people came for ivory coast they said they eight years will not be complete so my father should minus 6 years from the eight years which is 2 years for the renting where he put on the document 8 years so after that 8 years we would go and build our own house so from there the year not end he brought my father to court say my father should leave the area and the same document that they made that the same document that my father took to the court then the court say you know why just minus one years from the man time then they minus one year and the balance was 7 years. We did not even spend one year there then MODEL came after MODEL came my father had a farm right to Wehken and we harvest the rice it was 150 bags of rice in the house we left the rice there then Alex Towah them sent some boys to raid the house by that time we were not there then he say god bless that man I was going to kill him and his whole generation. After we went Nimba then the government forces in Nimba you know there were my mother came from they started fighting there again then we went to Buchanan highway. From there the LURD forces then came and said my father should fight the war. Then my father say I don't want to fight again though I fought for 1990 but now I have children behind me so I got to bear with my children I don't want to fight again. They force my father, my father said no they naked him put him in the ants in the jail for three days. Then they free him I and him went to Buchanan we walk by line we went we had 25 bags of salt and we were carrying it in the villages to sell because salt business was hard then he left me and mother in one village to carry the salt to the other village when he was the same people that did that thing to him met him on the road then they since you say you don't want to go fight we will races all y our things them from you then my father say I don't agree to go fight if your want to kill me then your can kill me. From there they beat him and took his salt bags from him and sent him on the front line then he and his friend went then he and his friend went then they put on guard through sleeping in the house then MODEL arrived there, then all the MODEL that arrived there they know my father they general name was Kennedy from right here Toes Town. My father was in the house after they shoot in the house then they killed one of the general for that area there. they jam my father up with the shooting no way for him to escape from there then when he went and open the door they shoot his hand then he took off his clothes and he went and fall down in front of them and told say I na soldier I am a civilian then their big man say your leave him let him join us. Then the man say ok I know you from grand Gedeh he say yes oh I left my things in my house there in grand Gedeh then Kennedy say oh but that your house and things that boy Towah sent people on that they things that man using down there and that how he told my father say go there no war fighting there go there then my father says alright. Then when my father came now then the Alex Towah man sent 4 armed men to my father that my father was fighting for Taylor when my father went around the Triangle so they should go and kill my father then my father say I not fighting for Taylor but I am fighting for MODEL I having my id card still he said no. then they carry my father and they started beating him with gun butt and they carried to one general Garran then Garran say oh this thing I don't know about it then they took him to WFP compound there were their base was he spent three days there with them the very day they suppose to kill my father in this particular hall here then Abubakr went and brought money to them then they free my father then when they free my father then he say my father should turn over the land to him then my father said if you want the land just tell me I will turn over the land to you don't kill me for it then he say his heart not satisfy he will still kill my father then they went for my mother they brought her then they naked her then Garran went and free my mother then my father say I will leave the house then he say if my father leaving the house he should not take anything from the house then my father say but I will not take something from the house it will not be good so Garran sent his wife with arms say go there and see so you r can get over it then she went and clear everything from the house then he made remarks that my father will see what he will do.

Then in the Christmas month right to the triangle there the even send soldier self to shoot me because that time they not disarm yet but I was so smart because I saw the yellow jacket group coming so I just past through the Gonnda video club and went to the house then I went and told my father. So when I heard about the TRC then my father say alright because he part I not in town they assign him in Monrovia but you must go the TRC I will give you the paper to carry there you give his complain there so that they can call him right there that what that happen. Then he even made statement this few days that the TRC he is the big man for the TRC in town here oh the Alex Towah man he was here today this morning he saw me to the door then he hiss teeth at me

Questions from Hearing Officer who facilitator the hearing:

Hearing officer: so he was part of the MODEL?

Child Witness: Yes, he was the MODEL big man in town here before the Garran group came.

You said the LURD rebel capture your father?

Child Witness: Yes the LURD rebel captured him first and he told that he doesn't want to fight in Buchanan.


The MODEL person that saw and recognize him he told your father to come to grand Gedeh?

Child Witness: Yes

And what is the name of the commander again?

Child Witness: Kennedy he was MODEL big man for the district.

Do Kennedy and Alex Towah work together?

Child Witness: No he know Alex but he and my father were working together the Kennedy man.

So what kinds of work your and Kennedy were doing together?

Child Witness: They were working with MGC.

In MODEL?

Child Witness: No that time MODEL not come yet that certain NGO they sue to build the road them and haul rice to the port.

So when your father was leaving he did not take anything with him?

Child Witness: That Garran sent his wife with arms and police people and that how we took the things from the house but only the rice we did not et he seize everything

So john Garran was the big for the MODEL?

Child Witness: Yes

So they 7 years your father and Alex made for the house how many years your spent there?

Child Witness: Only one year.

So he gave the balance money back of the balance 6 or 5 years?

Child Witness: No he not give nothing I even get the documents now even tomorrow you want bring the document here I will bring it.

Since then have your father ever went to court to address this

Child Witness: No, he is not sitting here he cant sit down here .

Where is he now?

Child Witness: Now he is in Monrovia.

What's about your mother?

Child Witness: My mother here

What do you want the TRC to do now?

Child Witness: For me the only thing I want the TRC to do is to develop our county.

Your father you should come is this what he said you should come for?

Child Witness: No he only sent me to come and talk it.

So Alex Towah that TRC man so when they made him TRC your father did not say anything?

Child Witness: My father even plan to meet him on the TRC business but he cant get chance you know that UNMIL people.

Do you have telephone number?

Child Witness: Yes I have my friend number here - 06637248

What about your father number?

Child Witness: No his phone spoiled.


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