Press Releases


Montserrado County, Liberia
14 December, 2008
Categorized as pertaining to: Events

THE Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Liberia takes note of the formal testimony of witness Ofori Diah at its public hearings on "the contemporary history of the conflict" on December 8th, 2008 at the centennial pavilion to the effect that Sheik Kafumba Konneh, a Commissioner of the TRC, allegedly recruited him to the ULIMO warring faction. This is not the first time that an allegation of this nature has been made against Commissioner Sheik Kafumba Konneh. This year also, Mr Tarty Teh wrote a letter to the TRC making similar claims that Commissioner Konneh was a member of the defunct ULIMO Warring Faction of Alhaji G V Kromah. Commissioner Konneh has categorically denied all such allegations of association with any warring faction for that matter.

The TRC says that all its Commissioners were individually selected to serve on the Commission through a public vetting process on their own merit, integrity and moral standing in the Liberian society and probably beyond, pursuant to Section 8, 9(a)(b) and 11 of the TRC Act of 2005 which afforded the public opportunity to scrutinize and vet all potential members of the Commission and submit objections to the Selection Panel as statutorily constituted for the purpose in Sections 8 and 9 above. More specifically, Section 11 of the said TRC Act provides, thus:

"Members of the TRC shall be persons in good health, of credibility, high integrity and honour; not known or perceived as human rights violators or members of groups involved in human rights violations and without prior conviction of a crime. As a whole, the Commission shall be balanced, representative of the Liberian society, perceived as impartial in its collectivity, and of diverse professional and regional backgrounds. Upon appointment, Commissioners shall renounce their membership of political parties."

The TRC, at this point, says it has no reason to doubt the integrity and honor of any of its Commissioners, including Commissioner Sheik Kafumba Konneh and is equally convinced that all Commissioners were selected in conformity with the provisions of Section 11 of the TRC Act. The TRC says that, these allegations are of a nature persistent and serious enough to claim the attention of the Commission. The Commission is an impartial transitional justice institution, and if these allegations are found to be merited, they could undermine the independence, neutrality and integrity of Commissioner Konneh as is expected of all commissioners. The TRC is under obligation to protect its integrity and the integrity of all its Commissioners at all times, and as such must be above suspicion.

The Commission has therefore authorized the Special Magistrate to expeditiously probe these allegations and future allegations of complicity in the commission of human rights violations against any official or personnel of the TRC. The Commission therefore calls on Mr. Ofori Diah, Tarty Teh and others to cooperate with the Special Magistrate in proving their allegations.

SIGNED: Jerome J Verdier, Chairman, TRC

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