Press Releases

NPFL Fighters Were Not On Salaries...Lewis S. Brown

A member of the defunct National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) Lewis Brown says fighters of the rebel group could not be differentiated from the civilian population because almost all Liberians were some how NPFL fighters.

"Many Liberians were NPFL fighters and that it is impossible for any organization to pay salaries to a country's entire population," Brown, one time national security advisor to former President Charles Taylor said.

Mr. Brown was testifying Wednesday at the ongoing TRC Institutional and Thematic Inquiry Hearings at the Centennial Memorial Pavilion in Monrovia.

"Can you imagine how it would be to withdraw thousands of fighters from the battle front and assemble them in town for salaries payments?" Mr. Brown, also a former minister of foreign affairs wondered.

He said many Liberians saw the coming of the NPFL as a blessing like the People's Redemption Council (PRC) military coup in 1980 and many took up arms voluntarily for so many reasons.

"In the first instance you will see a person holding arm and later on that very person will not be in arm and among the population as a civilian. Again it was difficult to distinguish the population from the arm fighters," he said.

Under the theme: "Understanding the Conflict Through its Principal Events and Actors," the ongoing hearings will address the root causes of the conflict, including its military and political dimensions.

The hearings are focused on events between 1979 and 2003 and the national and external actors that helped to shape those events.

The TRC was agreed upon in the August 2003 peace agreement and created by the TRC Act of 2005.

The TRC was established to "promote national peace, security, unity and reconciliation," and at the same time make it possible to hold perpetrators accountable for gross human rights violations and violations of international humanitarian law that occurred in Liberia between January 1979 and October 2003. Writes Dio Appleton (TRC Contributor)

Cclic This work is licensed under a Creative Commons
Attribution-Noncommercial-No Derivative Works 3.0 License
This had been the official website of the Liberian TRC. The Commission ended operation
in 2010. This website is maintained by the Georgia Institute of Technology.