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The twelfth day of the TRC Public Hearings Proceedings held on Monday January 28, 2008 at the Centennial Memorial Pavilion. The Hearings session started with the Commissioners of the TRC being ushered into their seats followed by a welcome remarks form the Chairman of the TRC Cllr. Jerome Verdier, who then called on the Hearings Officer Pastor John Teayah to invite the first Primary Witness to give her testimony.
Fifty Third Primary Witnesses of the TRC Public Hearings
(First Primary Witness of day twelve)
The First Primary Witness of the day was called to the stand and he was accompanied by the psychosocial officer and the protections officer of the TRC. The Primary Witness was then sworn to tell the truth and nothing but the truth by the TRC Hearings Officer.
Chairman: Madam Witness, you are welcomed to the TRC Public Hearings, this is the forum for all Liberians to say what happened to them and for Liberians to reconcile their past.
Primary Witness: Thank you sir.
You can go ahead
Primary Witness: During 1990 my uncle was working in Firestone Division 13 and we were in the interior, so we were Fasama. Some soldier came they say they are looking for Doe soldier, then three came again, so we ran in the bush. So anything we used to cook we will go bush and eat it.
It was in Zalagbea right behind our town they put about 21 persons in one I don?t see them but they say. Then we hear gbohn-sound (launching sound) we were in the bush then some came again we use to cook in the night that evening I had potato greens and I was going to the river for water then I put the bucket on my head then we saw the soldier coming again and they say what your get her your put all outside and they started charging us they took our rice, oil and everything they took it from us. And they say we must beat rice to cook for them while beating the rice we hear gbohn-sound (launching sound) and the say we must go, my pa was not use to see and my aunty too can't walk and they say we must go anything we can go back for them and carry for them.
One afternoon, I can remember I went to the creek and washed one lapper and I was sitting side it for it to get dry then one Kpelleh, Koleh -Koleh say [Kpelleh language] meaning..."We not play in Fasama we burnt those batches" not knowing that our things we left there in the town that the same thing they stated selling it to us again.
One oldma was in the town when they were burning the town. She said the soldier came and said they should go in the one room saying that they get some food for us, so when the people were gathering the oldma say she went in the banana bush and started looking, they put the people in the house and put fire on the house. And oldma say they put your pa and your aunty in the house and burnt them...soft crying,...say everybody die but they not die by themselves they burnt them. She said she was the one was the only person who did not in that house and that's how she survived.
Then we started walking going Bomi when we reached Bomi we use go and pick bush yam sometimes, slice it and dry and beat it and fix it as bumboy and that's what we use to eat and that what's we were on until we get to Ganstrostown they say we should cross for our ticket and go get for good, when we in Galatuah across St. Paul, when we they give relief food like rice, beans and argol oil and cocodolo.
One night we heard gbohn-sound (launching sound) by then we almost reaching Belehfenneh, when we were getting close to Belehfenneh the town people say you're your Ulimo people that behind your, your moh [must] not enter the town until day break.
We spent two days and the one that make it three day we hear gbohn-sound (launching sound) we started walking again, we reach somewhere they put all the men one side and the women. So I started thinking about my son because me I only get one child and that how my pa born me too. It never stayed too long I saw my son coming because he was in the men then group when they divided people.
Then in Wenzu they brought emergency food for us and before they could reach to us on the line they say they must close the truck and they started going saying that they were going to bring our own the next day, and they lock the car and left. So I went to one of my friends to give me some of her food so when my time reach too I will give her own of rice to her then again after that we heard the gbohn-sound (launching sound) again we went in the bush again until one week past the solider went for us in the bush. Then the soldiers said all those people that coming from Lofa we are sending your back.
We sent three weeks in Belehfenneh and later they came and fixed our pass to go back to Lofa, so in Salayea, they say we must go to Zorzor about 600 civilians with only two soldiers. And that's how we got to Zorzor. On Christmas Eve about 50 Ulimo came and pass by us then I say ehn the people say they were coming to spend the charismas with us here then they passing like this. Then one night I told my friend to carry me outside to pee pee, when we came outside we saw two soldiers and hid ourselves and they came and pass then I told my friend I say this two soldiers na look like Ulimo soldiers.
I say the next morning they killed the captain one Mohammed who force me and me his wife, and the other one Yaahn run away. The people we saw that people that came they kill, kill and kill we were still in side but I was hearing what they were saying. The other man said the armor finish then his friend say but we get cutlass, mortal pencil and sticks here. And they put everybody outside and packed us in the one store, and they asked us different questions so they say my sister that commander wife because she use to be fat even self we were not eating but still she was still fat. They say because she was fat the shot her in her chest and the thing passed through her and hit her lil baby on her back. And that how she fall down.
They were still killing people then me and one papay went in one corner , they cut his hand, then I say no I can't stand then we ran in the market house, and they started asking who bring you here and they give it to him too and he drop so I say no I will let this gun to point to me if they will put it behind no problem then I will fall down and die but I will not let them point it to me as soon I start to move I hear the firing sound and I laid down and open my palm then the boy who shot he came over me to see if I am really dead then he went the mat I use to sell and he put fire it and put on me to see if I really died but I didn't shake I say ah God all my people died if I die who will go to say this to people, and luckily their own fire they put down started catching on the market hall. And that's how he left and they started running away.
Then I open my eye and woke up and I went in the bush where one old man treated me for some time and later we left from Salayea to our home. This time now I use to smell my self, then we hear the sound again, the soldier people came and said we should go to Konya and but me I was scare to Konya so I did not go with them I started walking in the bush, then I manage until I reach to one big water not known that Guinea border, then I say ah I na reach in Voinjama again, then one man call me vien, vien,[French meaning come, come] that's how I got in Guinea and the place I was until the soul [wound] finish.
You know when you something used to you it used to you. Then we came from the camp in Guinea. We started making our farm again. So one time the soldiers started following our foot marks and they reached in our town. They asked me if any soldier was in the town I say no, they say any men here I say yes, my son is here. They say they want see him and say I much carry them on the farm. They say if any rebel there they will kill me I say here then is started carrying to them to the farm. They say I must carry them to the farm when I carry them when my son saw us he wanted to running I told him not to running. They asked him if he was soldier he said no and they asked me and I say no too, then they carry us to Salayea, and they say he must join them but he say he could not join them because he had me his mother to be with and his wife and he said he could do any job they wanted him to do. And that's how he started tooting their loads and armors.
In Salayea that one itchy thing that we use to eat. So one time my son went with the soldiers again on the attack and he was tooting their ammunition while they were going the people started attacking and he could not drop their armor running away they were going to say he has different intention and he was them until he go shot on his side and luckily he did not die now na he is in Voinjama,, this story I can't fini all..
Questions from commissioner:
Chairman: Extends sympathy and thanks to witness for coming.
Commissioner Bull: You said your uncle Harris Pewee and brother big boy were killed by NPFL soldier, is that correct?
Primary Witness: I was not in firestone to know the difference, but that's how they told my mother that they kill her brother and his son.
You said in 1993, 23 civilians were put in the house and burnt them in Fasama town? Yama Lorpu survived, is that correct?
Primary Witness: Yes,
What group killed your sister Garmai and the other group of people that she died with?
Primary Witness: We were in Salayea with Ulimo but they were only two Ulimo soldiers one of them Mohammed who was killed and one escaped. It was the people who came to fight Ulimo who killed my sisters, her 3yr old daughter and other people.
So that was the same group that shot you and put the fire on the mat on you?
Primary Witness: Yes.
But you don't know the fighting group?
Primary Witness: Yes.
You say LURD force your son to join them?
Primary Witness: Yes, but he didn't join them he was only tooting loads for them.
Where is Robertson now, your son?
Primary Witness: In Zorzor
Commissioner Stewart: The man who was saying vient, vient that Guinea soldier or that who?
Primary Witness: Guinea soldier.
Commissioner Konneh: At the time the soldiers went in the town to look for Doe soldiers where there any Doe soldier around there?
Primary Witness: No
Do know which one of the groups was using your [you people] to pick coffee for them?
Primary Witness: Ulimo
Do you know where they use to carry the coffee to sell?
Primary Witness: No.
You said one Mohammed force you to be his wife?
Primary Witness: Yes
Is he living?
Primary Witness: No
Can you recognize any of them?
Primary Witness: It hard, the way they dress self, I could one but every body face was black and I was about 11 o clock
Commissioner Syllah: How old was your sister daughter?
Primary Witness: 3yrs
Do you know why they kill her?
Primary Witness: They say because she was fat so they say that commander wife because she look like somebody who was enjoying and they shot her in her chest and that how that's they shot hit the baby on her back. They will not fighting any body because no soldier was there
Can you remember how many person they killed that day
Primary Witness: I can't remember only me the people that were living together in one room that them I can remember
Can you remember any of them name?
Primary Witness: No
Where is your husband?
Primary Witness: He run away from me since the soldier did that thing to me he say I soldier man woman now so he left me.
Is he in Lofa?
Primary Witness: They say he in Gbarnga, they say.
Does your sister have other children?
Primary Witness: Yes.
Where are they?
Primary Witness: Two here right now and one in Harbel.
Chairman: you say your son in high school?
Primary Witness: Yes in Voinjama.
How old is he?
Primary Witness: That one I can remember because I bear pain for that one he was born August 16 1979,
Chairman: Do you know how many people were killed there?
Primary Witness: I can't remember all because there were some strangers that came and added on the town citizens selves. For people that got brunt they are:
*Solokapaja (witness' father)
Moniyana (witness' aunty)
(People burnt in my town)
Have you have any burial for those who got burnt?
Primary Witness: No. no hand.
Where are those burnt bodies?
Primary Witness: They remain in the house and house break down on them.
Chairman: Thanks for coming and in the end reassure that your voice an the voice all your people the government will hear?
Primary Witness: The same way my father born me I the only child and so my son, and his father left me, and that my uncle was doing all for me. My son not know his father, he not get helper so I appeal to government to help me for my only son, and the people they brunt so that we can bury them and any small money for me to do business.
Chairman: So many people na come in Fasama
Primary Witness: Yes but no zinc we can use thatch so when rain comes the whole that kind of way.
Fifty Forth Primary Witnesses of the TRC Public Hearings
(Second Primary Witness of day twelve)
The second Primary Witness of the day was called to the stand and he was accompanied by the psychosocial officer and the protections officer of the TRC. The Primary Witness was then sworn to tell the truth and nothing but the truth by the TRC Hearings Officer. The interpreter was also sworn to intemperate the direct words of the witness.
Chairman: Good Morning Madam Witness, we thank you for coming to the TRC, what you are doing today is what we all want so that we can put things back in order. All the Commissioners of the TRC are here to listen to your story which will be used in making the right the things that went wrong in this country. This is the opportunity to explain your experience.
Primary Witness: Thank you.
To start with what is your name?
Primary Witness: Massengbeh Dolley.
What are you doing for a living?
Primary Witness: Farming
Your date of birth?
Primary Witness: I am 55 years old
You can proceed.
Primary Witness: Should I summaries or go into details?
Chairman: Feel free and say what happened to you.
We were Gagabudu, we were all born there, before the war we were there living in peace until the elected James Lady as chief until 1990 war came when the war was coming we went to Guinea in Lokameh and went to Wellemen where there was a refugee came and the Government Representative called Massatio. We were 21 in number and my husband said we should go to the commissioner to give us place to live as refugee and the refugee said we did not come here to live we want to go back and he said we want the authority to give us a place to make a camp. He went to the commissioner and asked for a place and the site was given and we went to get sticks and we build houses.
After building our houses, other refugees came to ask my husband to request for land for them to build their houses. One Mr. Gibah Dukuly talked to the authorities to get UNHCL to help them with food and this was done and we started getting food and later we were told that war was finish and we should come home. We the Mandingo people came home sooner and left the Loma people there and we were told not to only fix our quarter but the whole town. There was no food at the time. We were in this condition until the Loma people came and there my uncle welcomed them. We went and embraced them. My uncle said we have spent some time here so we should offer them house to sleep in and when we did they refuse to go into them and they build their own houses.
The next morning one boy by the name of Sunny called all the Mandingo people to ask them question and he said home many times have you gotten supply from UN and my uncle wanted to answer and I said he should not. I said what we expected of you is to tell us thanks for what we have done in the town in your absence. And he said I know you will not answer but the reason you came here is to find our properties we left. And I said he who is a thief always think others are thieves. When we came we fixed the whole town and so you should tell us thanks for this. That was the beginning of our trouble in the town.
The man who asked the question is the son of the chief and is always calling us foreigners and we told him we are all citizens. My elder brother said this is what made my uncle to build out there and so we should go and build our house there and we went there to build our houses across the river. The young town chief said we should not build across the river. So my brother went and say the Dolly and Kamara have a custom, every thing we do we give kola and so he went to the chief and give him kola and said we want to build across there, and the chief threw it away and the old man Kamara said you can not do this for me I will accept the kola and he split the kola into two and ate on part of it.
All the time the chief use to threaten us saying if we continue living there we will die from it. Mr. Dolly said I build my house here and you are always causing problems and so I want to go across there and build my house here. Se he use to refer to us as strangers here that is why they are living there and my brother told them we are not strangers here. This was the condition, always ion case.
On day one boy by the name of Kanneh said these people out there are strangers and there is a rumors of war coming by the Mandingo and they are the ones there and you are doing nothing about them, and the young town chief put us together and told us. We told him you know we are all from here and we are all farmers, we are not bringing any war. We said the war they are talking about if it happens you will bear the consequences and we went home. We were called another day for meeting, he said we are hearing the rumors and said it is your people bringing that war and we will know what to do to your people. The young town chief sent for Captain Goleh and said there are Mandingo people here and they are the ones bringing the war, they have arms and so they should be tortured to confess.
He came and tied 15 young men for them to confess. We told the captain we want to explain ourselves to you, they said if we know about war we will not be here. We are making farms fro our parents. Every day this chief is just threatening and we are not bringing any war. The captain called for the Mandingo chief and said take care of these 18 young men and if I came from my patrol you hand them over. When he came he asked of them and they were turned over to him. He said this was just a test if they had intention of bringing war they would have ran as such they chief was just making things up. He said I am a soldier man and I came to kill you people, but from my investigation and you people did not escape, I know you don't have any problem. But you have to be careful. They might send somebody who is not like me. My uncle said we are all born here and you have to send people here to come to kill us and he said you people are hiding the arms and lying if the war come you will all die and as a chief if I do anything to you nothing will come out of it.
In this light one Gen. Mosquito was traveling to Monrovia and his car broke down and the chief send him a letter saying there are some enemies here and he came and caught everybody and tortured the youth and looted our town. Mosquito sad the chief said you don't respect him and if you don't we will do something to you people. We had to go for treatment in the next town and the hospital and she was beaten saying the chief send a letter to us say you don?t respect him. When my sister heard this she had to leave the town and go far off, she was arrested and brought back saying your chief send a message that you should not go anywhere.
One Colonel Flomo was told we had single barrel and he should come and take the arms and he came and tied all the youth and said if they don't confess they will all be killed. My son was among and they wanted to kill him and I went and beg the man not to kill my son for if he does I will also die, and the chief collected the single barrels, we were in this condition for 4 months 20 days, we cant go anywhere not even in the bushes for we could be killed.
Victim in tears....
Then later James the chief gathered us and said the war has entered Gollahun and he said the time has reached for all I have been saying. We again told him that we are in the town and no nothing about what he was saying and are not bringing any war. He said nobody leave this town until I can understand what is happening at the border. After that my brother Forkpa Dolleh came out in the morning hours and say people in the bush with touch light and he went in the centre of the town to tell the people and one man went in the bust and he was caught and he yelled and it came to the concern of everybody that the town was surrender. Some of the Mandingo boys went in the bush and asked them what were they doing there and they said the chief send for them to guide the town and one of our boys Bassi Kamara resisted them and when the people left Bassi Kamara was arrested and sent to Monrovia.
The next day we were called again and our chief was told that none of us should leave the town. After that he was asked that even the women should not leave? He said the women and old age can leave and that he has sent for people from the border to brief them on what was going on. Others were afraid and went into the bushes and I went and told my husband that we should leave the town too, and he said no we were all born here I don't think the chief will have a bad mind for me, let us stay here. The Mandingo chief came to my husband and said we can not stay here, my rice is ripe and I have to go on the farm to take care of it, and he went to ask the chief for the permission and he was yelling and my husband said the man is crying and my husband went under the bed and they enter the room and took him and I jumped on him saying he will not go, in the process the chop up the hand of one Mandingo boy an hit the other on the back with cutlass and the other with swollen job on his job. They dreg my husband and myself and carry us to the chief and went to the town and caught all the people and brought them to the chief house. Those that resisted were killed and they tied everybody on one line. After killing some people and wounding some the youth brought were rejoicing and saying who win the war, James Laddin. The doers of the act now went to him and said the mission is over, what next? He said you should go and loot the whole quarters. He sent them to the treasurer house and took all the money we had and said it is the money that was making us frisky.
I went to the chief place and said thank you very much, you said it and did it, where are you carrying my husband and other people, and he said where I am carrying them you will know and he was dress in his battle front cloths, and he took them to the water side. I went on the road as sat there and saw one young man and jump on him and said where is my husband and he push me and ran and I was jumping on all the people that were coming and they were escaping from me. I went back in the quarters and say only old women and my grand mother was there and we all started crying, all the youth and men in the town were killed.
I went to the chief and said you have killed all our men and husband where I we going to live until u get ready for us and he showed us a house to stay and I took all the old people there. I said you killed some and some are in the bushes, the children, I want to go and look for them can you give me somebody so that we can go and look for them? One Fullah man was there by the name of Alpha and they said they were not targeting them and he said I know where the women children are and he went for them and when they came they caught them and beat them and some of them went back in the bush and some remain. Later one survival came from the bush and said chief I am here and he was beaten and taken to the chief house. The man said chief where are we going to live, he said go to your quarters and live there. The next morning they went to look for him and he was no there and they came and caught me to show him and I said I don't know if you want to kill me you can go ahead, my husband is already dead.
The next morning a woman came and said what you are dong is bad and said the government is coming to get you people since you are killing the citizens so that you will go and fight rebels. He told his people that they should all go where they can go because of the news he was given, that the government is coming to get them. That night one boy called Kinni came and said where are the rest of the people that jumped in the bushes and I said I don't know and he grab me and started dragging me and the chief came and said what is the problem and he said if she don't show me where the other people came and ran don't show up I will kill her and the chief said you don't know that the people are coming from Voinjama fro us and you want to add our problem up, leave her alone. The next morning I went to the chief and said you have killed our people so I want to take the young people here so I want to find a car to take them and he said he is on his way I can do what I want and I went to another town I told the chief what had happened and said I want to bring my people here before we can find a place to go and he said no problem. The town Chief of Luimah said it is not easy for his people said he was looking for trouble and he said I will take the trouble saying that this woman have helped me when I use to go to that town and her grand father help us when our grand father was building this town so I cant turn her down. He gave me a place to sleep and that night the old woman among us was given another place and in the night the sane chief we ran from came to spend time and the chief of the town sent them away saying he will keep us and he is ready for any trouble. That morning the chief said I want to pray for you people because your father was good to us here and he said God will be with you people as you go. We reach to another village and the people in the town heard us speaking Mandingo and called us and hand cuff a pregnant woman and I told them to remove it and out it on my hand.
When the people released us and we went to Ponia and I recognize and man called Mr. Jallah and I asked him to give us a place and he went for a key and instead called the police and one man came with two arm men and said I am the G2 and they were hitting us with gun butt and the women of the town were booing at us and throwing stones at us. When we went to the office my name was there and the chief told them I was lying what he did is what I am saying, he killed my husband and other thirty people and they said if you talk we will kill you people and I said you can kill us all our people are already dead. One man there was sorry for me and went to called one captain who he said is very good and can sorry for people. When Captain Gollie said I know these people and anybody who harmed them I will shot them. He said I will put you in a house and lock you up so that they don't harm you, and he put us in the room and locked the door. We were there for some time.
While in the house the captain came and called me name and asked whether the children had eaten and called me to cook so that they can eat and I said it is late, he said if the children don't eat and died I will be held responsible and I told the people if I don't come back that it, and I went out and he help me and I cook and the children ate but I could not eat and could not sleep and the others slept until the next day. So the next morning the captain sent for his boss man Colonel Flomo and the took our photo and when he left the soldiers came and charged us and took our money and the handcuff the pregnant woman and she felt in pain and they took her to the clinic. So after that the colonel went to Zorzor to the UN with our photo and food was given to them and they were given 35 begs of rice and we did not gave us any money. And the girl in pain got a boy child and he was named after the colonel and he was happy and told the town people not to harm us for we are his people. So I went to the captain and said our food they give to the colonel he did not give us anything so my brother is in Zorzor and he should help me to go to there so that they can help us and he told the colonel and he said that will be the best. The captain found a dump truck and told him and he agree and the driver wife said he should not do it and he went to the captain and said my wife do not want me to take them and he said if you refuse I will bust all the tires of the car. And he agreed and said I will not help them to climb the truck and I went and help all the old people and children to enter the truck.
When we left Ponia and got to Fissibu there was a gate and the people said we smell Mandingos in this car and the car boy said we have a mission and we are not stopping and they move the truck and the people were shooting in the air. When we got to Zorzor, my brother was already talking to the people for me and he said this is my sister I was talking about and they took us to the barracks. When in Zorzor, Old man Kaifala was asked if he know me and he said yes and they said she has 44 people can you take care of them and he said I will, and he was asked who was his stranger father in the town and he said he has been a chief and said to cut long matter short, my stranger father is Taylor and they asked him for documents and he brought it and after looking at it they told him to go. While in Zorzor one man came and said the defense minister is here and we should go there so that you can explain your problem to him. I went and saw him in the midst of plenty soldier people and grab and the soldier people wanted to grab me and he said they should leave me and I explain the story and he was drinking Guinness and he threw the bottle and he said I you alone and I said I am here with 40 people and he sent for them all. The defense minister asked the colonel, Flomo and said I have been here and you did not ell me this and he said he forgot and I told them Minister what he did in the problem how he beat us and seized all the food that WFP give us and he was arrested and put in prison. I told the Minister that there is one Jallah here and he was there when all of our people were killed and he is hiding from us now and he was sent for and out in prison.
The minister said Jallah are you aware of what the woman said, he said yes, but I was afraid that is why I did not tell you, I am sorry and the chief said sorry for this he ordered that they tie him and that did and started beating him. So after that the minister sent people to the town to arrest all the people and bring them and it was Genneh who escorted them to the town and they said she should stay on the road and the people said you are the ones that killed the people and they said yes and the soldiers you are the kind of citizens we want and the collected all their cutlasses and tied them up and brought them to Zorzor and the minister said the only alternative is for us to killed all of you as you killed all the people. He said the President should be contact and he said he heard of it and said they would be brought to Monrovia for them to go to court. Later they said you can go home tomorrow we will provide two cars and carry you people to Monrovia the next day the perpetrators were taken and we did not go.
While in Zorzor they said the president said we should come to Monrovia for investigation and we went form office to office and one Lussini Camara and we spent four months and eighteen months and no case. So one time we were told in ray-light that the perpetrators were given cloths and sent back to their homes and Lussini Camara said we should forget about it and our people in town here rally around and give us money and we went to guinea and after 2005 election we came back. When we came back we can't go back to the old town and be with the people who are always teasing us and we went back to the town across the river and we are still in problem in that area, as I am here, I don't know what is happening behind me, because the man who did the act is a police officer and another one of them is a doctor, we are afraid because we don't know what will happen to us.
Questions from the Commissioners:
Co-Chairman: we thank you for telling your story, we are sorry for what happened to you and your people, your story have confirmed some of the things that have happened in this country as such the commission are saying sorry for what happened. They will ask few questions.
Commissioner Syllah: you said you stayed in Guinea for 6 years and when you came your brothers came and caused problems for you is this the same town you are now referring to?
Primary Witness: yes it is the same town and it is the town I was born the Gesse people called it Nikebuzu and it is what I am talking about.
Was there any other faction at the time?
Primary Witness: that time there was no war in that are
Was there no other authority she could take complain to for there was a government?
Primary Witness: There was no way for us to go anywhere because the chief denied us from going anywhere.
Is it the same chief that was there that is still ruling the town?
Primary Witness: Up till now he is the general town chief of the area.
Commissioner Konneh: you called somebody name, who cased all the trouble for you and even sized your rice, is he still alive and do you know where he is?
Primary Witness: Sonny is still alive and he is in Monrovia here.
You also talked about a time of Ramadan fasting and when you informed the chief instead of giving the freedom, he looted the mosque and took all the mats, can you tell us how damaged the mosque is and its status now?
What happened, we had a custom in the town before, each time when the fast month is starting they will give us chance and the dauble will not come out and at that time we were about to break our fast and they said we should go inside and they went in the mosque and took all the mats and destroyed the mosque.
You said the people who did the act were brought to Monrovia nad you were also brought to Monrovia and there was no investigation?
Primary Witness: Yes
Which of the ministry was responsible for the matter?
Primary Witness: I don't know about government, so I don't know.
Have you seen any of these people who did these?
Primary Witness: Up till now I can still see them and we are still living in the same town, we can see them they are not in hiding.
Commissioner Kulah: what mad the people to turn against you since you were living together before?
Primary Witness: What I can remember is that when this man was elected as a chief he used to say that the Mandingos do not respect their culture and that is where the whole thing started that our children do not respect them.
Did any of the children in the town join ULIMO?
Primary Witness: Yes 1990 when we went to guinea some of them join ULIMO and after disarmament the came and started making farms.
Was the chief the one who give the command for the people to be killed?
Primary Witness: Yes it is the same chief who gave the orders.
Commissioner Coleman: you mentioned that you heard that war was coming, how did your get the information?
Primary Witness: It is the chief who gather us and give us the information and it is the Mandingo people who are bringing the war and so if we are involved he will do bad to us.
Is it after that war that you said it is Alhaji Koroma who was bringing another war, I did not get that clear?
Primary Witness: He did not mention any name; he just said it is the Mandingo people that were bringing the war.
You said before the war there was a good relationship between you people and the Loma people?
Primary Witness: Yes
From the 1990 to the 1997, do you know how the ULIMO treated the Loma, maybe this was the course of the problem, do you know about this?
Primary Witness: No I was in Guinea.
How is this problem now a day is it only that town or all around the county?
Primary Witness: To my understanding the tribal sentiment is all over Lofa but the one of that town is worse.
From your testimony you saw NPFL, ULIMO and LURD did they treat the citizens the same way or differently?
Primary Witness: All the war I was in Guinea so I can't give you any experience of how they handle the citizens.
Commissioner Stewart: we are very sorry and praise the courage for leaving your people in such difficult times. The incidence you narrated what year and month did it happened?
Primary Witness: It happened in August the year the LURD invaded Lofa County.
Can you remember exactly many people were killed?
Primary Witness: I can't remember but when the chairman of the TRC went to our village he was given the names of all of them.
What was the name of the town Chief?
Primary Witness: James Lazalie is the chief and Zao is the medical person at the hospital and so because of his part played in the massacre I am afraid to go to the hospital which is the Bassiwen Hospital.
What exactly was this medical person working in the massacre?
Primary Witness: The part he played is the first day the people came and surrounded the town ad the said sorry he said if you had followed my plan we would have succeeded.
Did you see himself participate?
Primary Witness: I did not personally see him but because fo the remarks.
Is the police man still a police today?
Primary Witness: Yes he is in Monrovia.
Do you know his name?
Primary Witness: He is Kinni
Can you recognize him when you see him?
Primary Witness: Yes.
Have you seen him since then?
Primary Witness: Yes he went to the town after the war.
Was he in uniform?
Primary Witness: Yes
Did you see him killing?
Primary Witness: Yes I saw him killing.
Tell us some other people involved who you know?
Primary Witness: They are plenty and know them that were in the town. I was not to myself that time.
You mentioned one Jallah and Flomo?
Primary Witness: Flomo did not take port in the killing.
Was he aware of the killings?
Primary Witness: He is the one who started torturing us and took our single barrels as such he was aware.
How about Jallah?
Primary Witness: I have not seen him since the incident.
Was he a soldier?
Primary Witness: I don't know whether he was a soldier.
What is the name of the man who protected and save you
Primary Witness: Captain Golay, they said he is a army but I have not seen him.
How do you think peace reconciliation and harmony can be restored amongst the people of that town?
Primary Witness: To compromise and live as usual, the only problem is that those that did the cat are not sorry for what they did and continue to provoke us. We are not in peace for now, that is why we are here. We want things to be as usual and to show people that the world is over.
Have you brought this chief to the attention of the ministry of internal affairs?
Primary Witness: Really we told the chief that we don't need him anymore but we don't know how to carry the complain to the authority but he is aware.
Commissioner Bull: thank you for coming to tell us what happened to the Mandingo people in Lofa County. You make people to know that the TRC is for all. And you said the Chairman of the TRC went to the town and has the list of people that died in the town. Please tell me the name of the river in the town
Primary Witness: The name of the river is Lawo River.
What is the name of your husband?
Primary Witness: Mr. Philisue Foffana.
You said it was 18 Mandingo men in that number right?
Primary Witness: I only talk about 18 persons when they captain torture the youth but the people that died are more the 18.
The name of the Defense Minister
Primary Witness: I only know his Daniel name.
The police man who dragged you, you said he is in the police force, which town is he from?
Primary Witness: He is from the same Nikebuzu and at the time of the incidence he was not a police.
If we find the police, can you remember him?
Primary Witness: Anytime I see him I will know him.
Commissioner Dolopei: Mr. Interpreter thank you form the job well done and thank you ton the witness for telling us her story. Her story will help us realize our mandate of investigation those things that happened during the war and addressing the issue of impunity or fostering reconciliation when she and the people and the Loma people will live tougher as one and make recommendation. We want to thank her for her courage to take charge as a lone woman for her people.
Audience we want to thank you for the patience and understanding thus for we are closing the hearings process as announced on Friday to attend a state function. We will continue tomorrow.
End of Day Twelve of the TRC Public Hearings
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