President George Weah, who delivered his second address at the United Nations General Assembly in New York, United States of America, on Wednesday, September 25, 2019, has recommitted his country to supporting, upholding, and exhibiting the core values and founding principles of the United Nations.
The aspect of the UN values has to do with promoting peace and security, human rights and justice for all.
While addressing 193 members of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) High-Level General Debate, President Weah hailed and recounted the UN’s contributions to Liberia which, in recent years, include the restoration of peace and stability following over 14 years of civil unrest.
“Today, Liberia is the United Nations’ success story globally. Therefore, I will keep the peace and ensure that, under my watch, Liberia does not return to the dark days of conflict and war,” President Weah said.
President Weah, according to an Executive Mansion release, said the country has begun proceedings for the implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) recommendations, as he vowed to listen and do the will of the Liberian people.
The TRC report calls for the establishment of an extraordinary criminal tribunal to prosecute those identified as having committed gross violations of human rights and economic crimes between 1979 and 2003.
The TRC also recommended the use of a conflict-resolution mechanism that has been traditionally used in the country and which has been called the “Palava Hut” mechanism, whereby in various district meetings conducted by community elders, perpetrators could publicly request forgiveness from their victims, where the aims of restorative justice could be served.
Restorative justice is an approach to justice in which the response to a crime is to organize a meeting between the victim and the offender, sometimes with representatives of the wider community.
President Weah assured Liberians and the world at large that he would listen to the resonating voices of Liberians and their international partners who have called for the establishment of a war and economic crimes court.
“It is important to bring closure to the wounds from the 14 years of Liberia’s brutal civil war, and that we need to agree on a mechanism that would guarantee the sustenance of peace, stability, justice, and reconciliation as well as enhance our prospects for economic recovery,” Weah said further.
Given the importance of the matter, President Weah said, “I have already begun consultations with members of the 54th Legislature — the representatives of our people — and we intend to have a broader engagement with the Judicial System and with our strategic international partners and organizations to determine pertinent issues such as legal framework, timing, venue and funding.”
He solicited the unflinching support of the international community and other partners, expressing the hope that there would be a consensus in determining a pathway to resolving this issue of a war and economic crimes court in the country.