TRRC public hearings end!

May 28, 2021, 11:32 AM

After two years of public testimonies from over 370 witnesses, the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations (TRRC) yesterday ended its public hearings.

TRRC is a truth-seeking commission to probe into atrocities committed by the former president, Yahya Jammeh 1994 to 2017.

Since it started public hearings in January 2019 more than 370 witnesses have appeared by the commission. It was on 13 December 2017, the Truth, Reconciliation and Reparations Commission (TRC) Act was passed, and it received presidential assent on 13 January 2018.

It’s important to state here that the TRRC has defied all odds, especially those who thought the commission was established to ‘witch hunting’ certain people. But what is important is the fact that the testimonies in the public glare are enough to reason that serious or gross human rights violation have taken place under Jammeh’s rule.

What is even fundamental is the fact that during its public hearings, victims have narrated their side of the stories. And perpetrators themselves have confessed or admitted to these crimes.

What is fascinating about TRRC is that it also brokered reconciliation between victims and perpetrators. We have seen several reconciliation meetings which are indeed crucial in forging as a nation.

Reconciliation is key in any development process. Reconciling and having the heart to forgive are key to harmonious living in any community. The more we forgive and reconcile, the more we stand to progress in life. In fact all major faiths in the world encourage and promote reconciliation and forgiveness.

We cannot but profoundly thank TRRC chairman, Dr. Lamin Sise, our able and respected lead Counsel, Essa M. Faal and the entire team of commissioners and other counsels and the entire staff.

With your slogan, ‘Never Again’, you all weathered the storm just to ensure that truth is uncovered despite the challenging nature of your work.

Former South African Archbishop Desmond Mpilo Tutu once stated that “true reconciliation is never cheap, for it is based on forgiveness which is costly. Forgiveness in turn depends on repentance, which has to be based on an acknowledgment of what was done wrong; and therefore on disclosure of the truth. You cannot forgive what you do not know.”

We once again applauded the entire TRRC team for a job well done. We only hope that its recommendation will be given due consideration to be able to forge ahead as a nation.

One Gambia, One People, One Nation!


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