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Implement peace and reconciliation- Civil Society

By Jos Garneo Cephas

(lbsonline/Liberia)-A coalition of civil society organizations has renewed calls for the full implementation of the defunct Liberian Truth and Reconciliation Commission’s recommendations.

The coalition comprises the National Civil Society Council of Liberia (NCSCL) and the Transitional Justice Working Group (TJWG).

“We in the council want government to apologize to Liberians because it was unable to protect its citizens and left then vulnerable to the mercy of warring factions and war-lords”.

“There is also the need to memorialize the dead in counties where massacres took place”.

The coalition made the position statement Friday, November 9 2012 at a press conference in Sinkor, Monrovia.

The Coalition though praised government for putting in place a roadmap to achieving national reconciliation; they however cautioned that the implementation of the TRC recommendations must be considered.

“All over the world, the implementation of TRCs recommendations is the responsibility of governments.”

“Therefore, the civil society council will continue to play such advocacy role until government sees reasons to collaborate with non-state- actors in breaking the cycle of impunity and violence in the country” the civil leaders said.

The civil society groups also expressed concern over what they called the recent confession, tension, and infighting among government officials of various branches.

“We are raising the red flag over these issues, least we delay or forget, uncertainty could plunge us into another phase of war”.

“Failure by government to live up to reconcile Liberians will amount to a major lapse”, Madam Greaves said.

As part of the reconciliation process, the council is expected to dedicate Liberia’s first National Memorial Project in Samah Kpolokpala Town in Bong County, this week.

The civil society council is therefore recommending to government that  a simplified version of the road-map  to peace, be done in order to increase public awareness and include stakeholders such as prominent citizens, chiefs and civil society organizations.

“The work plan and timelines of the programs of the roadmap must be detailed to ensure independent monitoring and evaluation by Civil Society Organizations and other interest parties” they said.


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