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TRC Implementation Good for Lasting Peace – UN Resident Coordinator Asserts

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The United Nations Resident Coordinator in Liberia, Mr. Yacoub El Hillo, says the UN strongly believes that implementing the recommendations of the TRC is one of the essential channels of achieving long lasting peace and fostering full reconciliation, noting that as such, National Colloquium on the Implementation of the TRC Recommendations in Liberia is an excellent opportunity for all to discuss a mutually agreeable mechanism to bring closure to the past. This colloquium is imperative as it strives to convene all stakeholders to agree on the way forward with the TRC recommendations.
The UN Resident Coordinator in Liberia spoke May 15, 2019 in Gbarnga when he made special remarks at the National Colloquium on the Implementation of the TRC Recommendations in Liberia.
He pledged that the UN is committed to continue supporting the government and the people of Liberia in their quest for lasting stability, peace and reconciliation.
The UN envoy restated the UN’s belief that efforts to build sustainable peace in post conflict states are not durable without equally establishing the rule of law, noting that United Nations believe that for the gains that have been realized in Liberia to be sustainable, grievances from the past must be addressed..
Mr. Yacoub El Hillo also to achieve sustainable peace, there is the need for Liberians to continue to respect the right and dignity of one another, promote access to justice, ensure inclusive and equitable growth, increase basic quality services for all, and establish capable institutions able to resolve conflicts and enforce laws fairly.
In any country where the rule of law is not effectively administered, the UN diplomat said injustice, violence against women and girls, corruption, and general criminality are often endemic.
He accentuated that that rule of law in this instance presupposes remedies and redress for violations, and dedicated efforts to seek closure to the past and forge a peaceful future, saying that conversely, there cannot be development in any society without peace and that sustainable peace cannot be fully consolidated without the respect for human rights.
Mr. Hillo expressed delight to participate in what he called “this epoch-making colloquium on the implementation of the Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) recommendations”. This colloquium is an opportunity to add the voice of the United Nations to the conversations taking place on accountability, reconciliation and peace consolidation in Liberia.
According to him, Liberia so far has enjoyed 15 years of uninterrupted stability crowned by the successful completion in March 2018, of an extended peacekeeping period. “We at the United Nations believe that for the gains that have been realized to be sustainable, grievances from the past must be addressed,” he said
The series of conversations that will take place in the colloquium, he asserted, will hopefully contribute to the discourse. “I therefore urge all participants to be frank, constructive and solution oriented, bearing in mind that the overarching need for peace, stability, progress and economic development of Liberia can only be sustained if Liberians speak out and dialogue on how to heal the wounds of the past,” he urged the participants
He intimated that efforts to build sustainable peace in post conflict states are not durable without equally establishing the rule of law, but added that rule of law in this instance presupposes remedies and redress for violations, and dedicated efforts to seek closure to the past and forge a peaceful future.
“Conversely, there cannot be development in any society without peace and that sustainable peace cannot be fully consolidated without the respect for human rights,” he reemphasized.
He said the UN strongly believes that addressing the question of accountability is essential to achieving long lasting peace and fostering full reconciliation.
On accountability, he said all Liberians have the right and the opportunity to discuss and agree on the restorative mechanism they want to put in place to bring closure to this important question. “This mechanism needs not come from outside and need not be set up outside. It can be right here, led and owned by Liberians,” he warned.
He said as long as it is in conformity with international standards and as long as it is credible in the eyes of the victims and their families and the public at large.
“For any country to attain enviable heights among the comity of nations there must be sustainable peace. And sustainable peace means that the probability of using destructive conflict, oppression and violence to solve problems is so low that it does not form part of any party’s strategy, while the probability of using cooperation, dialogue and collaborative problem-solving to promote social justice is the norm,” he reasoned.
He pointed out that in the United Nations vision for Liberia is “To support Liberia to become a reconciled, transformed and prosperous nation anchored on accountable institutions and equitable, inclusive sustainable development”.
“This vision is achievable if all Liberians rise to the occasion of placing national interests over and above any other interest,” he said.
He then commit the UN’s solidarity with the Government and people of Liberia towards promoting peace, stability, reconciliation and development in the country, and extended the congratulations of the UN to the INHCR and participating organizers of this colloquium.