The countrywide consultation on the proposed Truth, Reconciliation and Reparation Commission began on Monday with first meeting in North Bank region’s capital, Kerewan.
The purpose of the consultation is to sensitize the Gambian people about the TRRC & to listen to their views so as to incorporate them.
The TRRC will be set up and public hearings will commence once people’s views have been obtained and the TRRC bill enacted .
The Attorney General and Minister of Justice Abubakar Tambadou heads the delegation including the UNDP Resident Coordinator in the Gambia Ms Ade Mamonyane Lekoetje among other top officials, youth leaders etc.
In Kerewan, Minister Tambadou thanked the Governor of the region for the great hospitality and the people for coming out in large numbers to attend the meeting.
He reminded the people to understand that these are just consultations geared towards comprehensive formulation of the TRRC process. He urged perpetrators to come forward and tell Gambians what they did, why they did it, how and where they did it.
He said “if perpetrators do not come forward to talk and we have evidence of your crimes, full force of law will follow You. Jammeh didn’t do all by himself. He had people that helped him..We did..Our uncles,our mothers sisters etc” AG Tambadou said.
Tambadou also acknowledged the fruitfulness of the meeting saying “We are happy because exchange of ideas has happened. We’ve heard from our mothers, fathers, our youth and elders”.
He lauded the presence of the UNDP chief in the Gambia at these consultations which according to him, show UN’s commitment to the process.
Participants from the region also said the TRRC is highly needed saying the amount of anger seething in public is high and only a Commission can quench this anger.
“Gambia can’t go forward without Commission. We need to ask each other for forgiveness & expose the people that committed atrocities” -a youth mobilizer said.
The delegation’s next meeting place is Georgetown, CRR.