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Sundaygar Dearboy Ordered the Killing Of My Son: Witness

April 17, 2008

BUCHANAN (TRC)?A witness told commissioners of Liberia's Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) that popular musician "Sundaygar Dearboy" ordered the killing of her son in 1994 when rampaging fighters of the defunct National Patriotic Front of Liberia (NPFL) under his command captured the town of Sagbah, Grand Bassa County.

Weeping profusely while testifying recently at rural public hearings in the port city of Buchanan, Grand Bassa County, the witness, Madame Tohn Suah, said Michael Davis, also known as "Sundaygar Dearboy," ordered fighters to tie her son before they slaughtered him on the outskirt of the town.

"They took us to one town call Sagbah town. When we got there, they started singing one song that means, ?That place is hot don't put your self there.' They had their commander call Michael Davis. He said they should tie my son. When they tied him, I started crying. Even his father wanted to talk, they started putting fire on him," she explained.

"So they carry my son. We were sitting down and one boy came and asked, ?Old Ma, how many children you got?' I say, ?I have three children.' Then the boy said, ?Your son they carried, they gonna finish killing him,'" the distressed mother continued.

Madame Suah said the fighter later displayed the cutlass used to slaughtered her son after she disputed the story of his death, saying, "I asked him if that true you talking so? He said here is his blood here on the cutlass. I wanted to cry but the soldiers said if I cried they will kill me."

She said one of her nieces bled profusely to death after the fighters gang-raped her.

The witness said when the fighters captured the town they assured inhabitants that they had come to redeem them, but no sooner they separated the men from the women and started raping the women.

"They took the men from us. They put them in the attic, and they put fire under it with pepper. Then they started sleeping with our daughters. I had one of my daughters who was sick with me, and they wanted to sleep with her. I say ?She is sick, oh.' But they still raped her," she explained.

The TRC is an independent body set up to investigate the root causes of the Liberian crisis, document human rights violations, review the history of Liberia, and put all human rights abuses that occurred during the period from 1979 to 2003 on record. The TRC mandate is to also identify victims and perpetrators and make recommendations on amnesty, prosecution and reparation.

The public hearings are being held under the theme: "Confronting Our Difficult Past, For A Better Future."

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