By Amadou Jadama
A special adviser on transitional justice processes Hussein Thomasi said the establishment of TRRC, CRC and Security Sector Reform programmes are essential components of any transitional justice mechanisms.
He made these observations at an Africa Transitional Justice Legacy Fund consultative meeting.
“Transitional Justice as most of you have come to understand it today, deals with how society comes to term with past atrocities to research for truth and reconciliation and healing,” Thomasi said.
The UN defined transiotnal justice as the full range of processes and mechanisms associated with a society’s attempt to come to terms with a legacy of large-scale past abuses, in order to ensure accountability, serve justice and achieve reconciliation.”
“In December 2017, the National Assembly passed three important legislations; TRRC Act, CRC Act and the National Human Rights Commission Act.
These Acts constitute three main pillars of our transitional justice programme. Another significant pillar is Security Sector Reform.
The establishment of the TRRC Act was preceded by the successful completion of a study tour that we in The Gambia had in Sierra Leone, South Africa and a wide-spread consultation done both locally and in abroad as well as a careful consideration of recommendations made by Gambians,” he explained.
Thomasi said those study tours and the national consultation programmes were funded by UN Peacebuilding Fund at a tune of over a million dollars. He said this has helped established a credible transitional justice mechanisms that seek to promote reconciliation and sustainable peace in The Gambia.
He said: “Transitional justice then, was entirely a new concept. We are still learning from others’ experiences. What we have here in tailoring our transitional justice process was not a copy and paste thing, but adopting what has taken place in other countries.”
He explicated that the CRC was established to draft a new constitution and help safeguard The Gambia’s Republican system of government, including democratic values, and promotion of the rule of law.
“…Also, to protect fundamental rights and freedom as well as ensure periodic elections are held.”