The TRRC has been granting audience to “witnesses” who had been giving evidence based on what they were told by dead people. Some of the testimonies had to do with an alleged torture reportedly subjected to their late loved ones. For the sake of credibility purposes, are such evidence(s) admissible? Does the TRRC has the know how to ascertain veracity of such claims?
Hearsay witnesses or witnesses testifying on the basis of information they allegedly received from departed souls should not be presented as a statement of fact. That defeats the purpose of the TRRC.
It should be noted that the TRRC’s operational mantra centered on: Establishing an impartial historical record for The Gambia—beginning from July of 1994 to December of 2016, when Jammeh’s term ended.
Any serious TRRC should not be parading witnesses, who are not direct victims of the former administration. Remember: The TRC is about victims and perpetrators.
Admitting evidence from folks, who are relaying messages they purportedly received from secondary sources (dead victims) and present them as an impartial historical record is not only misleading, but dishonest.
The TRRC should be mindful of distorting history. To avert historical distortion, the TRRC should endeavor to ensure that witnesses or hearsay witnesses should be properly vetted before they are accorded audience.
In much as the dead are not here to state their own side of the story, it is morally and legally wrong to grant audience to non direct Jammeh victims, who could not be challenged by the late DEAD people they are accusing. If the person is a direct victim, is a different story altogether.
Let avail fair play to the accused dead, even though they are not around to counter such allegations.
It is our fervent belief that: the TRRC’s move to hear folks, who are not direct victims of the former Jammeh administration will only open the floodgates for others to use the Commission to settle scores and make up stories to their advantage.
As the saying goes: One cannot testify in a case that he or she hasn’t witnessed or become a victim. TRRC please take note.