The Search for Truth and Justice Must Not Undermine Liberia’s Fragile Peace

first_imgBy Caroline Bowah BrownI remain an advocate for justice and truly want accountability for the heinous crimes committed in Liberia. Yes, I do but I am also of the opinion that doing so must be thought through carefully. The search for truth and justice must be carried out without jeopardizing the fragile peace we enjoy in this moment. It must be done while ensuring our safety.The Truth and Reconciliation Commission of Liberia was established to promote national peace, unity, security and reconciliation and hold perpetrators accountable for the atrocities committed.  About eleven years ago, the Commission completed its work and handed over its report to former President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf for implementation. President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf made no overtures towards implementing the recommendations of the TRC. The UN and other international organizations took no action against Madam Sirleaf for her failure to do so. In fact, she was awarded several accolades from the same international community; one of them being the Nobel Peace award and later the Mo Ibrahim Award after she stepped down from political office.  What double standards. The international community was extremely tolerant towards her government and no pressure was mounted on her to implement the recommendations of the TRC. As part of its support to the peace process, the UNMIL was under obligation to ensure the Liberian Government implement the recommendations of the TRC report. According to the 1st United Nations Security Council 1509 (2003) that established the mission, it was mandated to “support all parties to cease all human rights violations and atrocities against the Liberian population, and stresses the need to bring to justice those responsible.” After 15 years, the UNMIL closed down its Liberian operation without achieving one of its key mandates, which was to support the Government to bring to justice those responsible for committing atrocities in Liberia.  Shortly after the election of the new Government of President Weah, there have been increasing calls for judicial accountability for war crimes from various sources including social media and other spaces.  Similarly, on July 5, 2018, Human Rights Watch put out a statement supported by Seventy six Liberian, African, and international non-governmental organizations demanding the Liberian government “undertake fair and credible prosecutions of international crimes committed during its two civil wars”.  The statement was submitted to the United Nations Human Rights Committee.   On September 8, 2018, the US Congress introduced a resolution for the full implementation of the TRC recommendations. Interestingly this is the first concrete action taken by the US government since the completion of the TRC’s work. No such action was ever taken during the tenure of Madam Sirleaf’s government.  This makes one wonder why after more than eleven years they choose this moment to begin to pursue the implementation of the TRC recommendations. What does the US Congress aim to achieve, what is the real motive for this action? In the first place the new government is still in its infancy and only now starting to organize itself and implement the mandate given to it by the Liberian people.  For me, it is too early and not timely for the US Congress to burden the Liberian government with such demands. We vividly remember how the US Embassy shut its gates and watched from the Atlantic shore while millions of Liberians were being killed, raped, tortured etc. If Liberia is forced to implement these recommendations, is the international community and the US in particular, ready to create the conditions to guarantee our safety and stability?  What commitments are they making if Liberia once again finds herself in a state of instability while implementing the TRC recommendations? Bearing in mind that some of the alleged perpetrators hold a great deal of power and have amassed personal wealth, it is important to consider how this power and influence might be used to resist the TRC implementation. The risk of such a process destabilizing the country is high and this is the reason why such a process should have been conducted while the UNMIL force was still stationed in Liberia. The UNMIL mission could have supported the judicial accountability process before their mission ended.   In closing, it is important for the Government of Liberia to be very clear about how the leadership wants to proceed with the non-judicial and judicial process for transitional justice in Liberia. They must be in the driver’s seat and show the Liberian people that they mean to act on this in a measured and responsible way. Many are hurt, many need reparations and many need to be reconciled.  As I write this I am reflecting on a day in 2003 when we had nowhere to run and I had to carry my one year old baby and choose which of our few belongings to carry. Today he is 16 years old and will soon be completing high school. I imagine a bright future for him. This future can only be guaranteed by a peaceful country.  This is the aspiration of many Liberians. We do need closure to this chapter. Of course we need justice but it must NOT be detrimental to the fragile peace. We look forward to the Government position on this and it must not be driven by an international agenda. Never again!The Author:Ms. Caroline Bowah Brown is an Economist, Gender Specialist and a leader in civil society movement in Liberia and currently serves as the Country Director for medica Liberia, and a lecturer at the Department of the Economics, University of Liberia.  In 2008, Ms. Brown was appointed by Her Excellency Ellen Johnson Sirleaf to serve as member of the Veterans Bureau. Most of her work is in the areas of gender, peacebuilding, security sector reform and transitional justice. She has a Masters Degree in Economic Policy Management from Makerere University in Uganda. Share this:Click to share on Twitter (Opens in new window)Click to share on Facebook (Opens in new window)last_img read more

South African Premier Business Awards finalists named

first_imgThe finalists in the South African Premier Business Awards were announced by the Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies where he also confirmed that the fifth annual gala event will be held on 30 January 2018.Proudly South African Public Relations Manager Deryn Graham; Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies; and Rabia Metedad, Brand South Africa Activations Manager, are guests at the media launch. (Images: Melissa Javan)Melissa JavanThe finalists in the 10 categories in the fifth annual South African Premier Business Awards were announced in Johannesburg on Monday, 20 November 2017, at the Johannesburg Stock Exchange (JSE).The awards are hosted in partnership with the Department of Trade and Industry, Brand South Africa and Proudly South African. The winners will be announced at a gala event to be held on 30 January 2018, which will take the theme “Rewarding Business Excellence”.“The awards seek to recognise and celebrate entrepreneurs and companies that invest in both human and technical resources in various activities that are producing quality products and services,” Trade and Industry Minister Rob Davies said in his keynote address.They recognised and honoured local enterprises that promoted the spirit of success, innovation, job creation, quality and good business ethics in South Africa’s business community. “They will also showcase the best that South Africa has to offer in terms of products and services made in South Africa.”The awards were not about winning money, the minister stressed; rather, it was about prestige – which the department hoped to increase. The finalists should be proud that they had reached this level of the competition.Minister Rob DaviesSponsors and affiliate partnersThe sponsors of the South African Premier Business Awards are Tsogo Sun, the JSE (affiliate partner) and Wits Business School (academic partner).The prizes are:Wits Business School will provide executive development programmes to qualifying employees from selected winners to the total value of R1-million.The Investor of the Year will get JSE-accredited training for five of the company’s executives or staff members.Tsogo Sun will give weekend accommodation to select winners anywhere in South Africa.Thanking the sponsors, Davies said: “This is a sign that we can work together to make South Africa better.”There were 179 nominations this year.The finalistsInvestors AwardQK Meats SADefy AppliancesSumitomo Rubbers South AfricaCoega Development CorporationExporters AwardSumitomo Rubbers South AfricaSimplus InnovationQK Meats SAAerosud AviationGEW TechnologiesEnterprise Development Support AwardSumitomo Rubbers South AfricaNational Urban Reconstruction and Housing AgencyParamixedNampak ProductsSasol South AfricaManufacturers AwardNdokhulu Hydraulic and Mining SupplierExodusThekwini Wire & FastnersThata Ubeke ManufacturingBlack Industrialists AwardNdokhulu Hydraulic and Mining SupplierThekwini Wire & FastnersThata Ubeke ManufacturingShandos ConstructionBlessing ConnectSMME AwardMaid 4 ULulaway HoldingsMzwethembela TradingFloida Engineering ServicesBarui Briehoek CooperativeNdoukhulu Hydraulic and Mining SupplierKhuphulanani Training InstituteYoung Entrepreneur AwardIntercessor Army FranchingSikuphiwe TradingKreetiv CommunicationsGridbow Engineers and Technical ServicesMasifunde Training CentreIsimangaliso GroupMpiloSimplus InnovationTnM InnovationsWomen-owned Business AwardFloida Engineering ServicesKreetiv CommunicationBBD Steel SuppliesKhuphulanani Training InstituteExodusKhalalaProudly South African Enterprise AwardMaid 4 ULa Van Skin and Body Excellence SystemEkurhuleni Artisans and Skills Training CentrePlay Your Part AwardSihles BrewEkurhuleni Artisan and Skills Training CentreNampak ProductsLittle Green NumberClover Mama Africa TrustWould you like to use this article in your publication or on your website? See Using Brand South Africa material.last_img read more

The first “Cab Cam” of 2015 as planting ramps up in Ohio

first_imgShare Facebook Twitter Google + LinkedIn Pinterest With an unusual break from rain and cold weather this spring, many farmers across Ohio headed to the fields to work ground, spray and in some cases even begin the 2015 planting season. Ty Higgins found The Kocher Family of MKB Farms in Galion, Ohio doing just that. Nick Kocher was Ty’s guest for the first Cab Cam of the season.last_img

MasterCard Launches Woot-Like iPhone App for Daily Deals

first_imgWhat it Takes to Build a Highly Secure FinTech … The Rise and Rise of Mobile Payment Technology Why IoT Apps are Eating Device Interfaces And if you’re worried that you still might find a better deal by shopping around online, the app has you covered here, too. Instead of purchasing the item immediately from your mobile, you simply “reserve” the item. Of course, to do so, you have to link a MasterCard credit, debit or prepaid card to your account first. You then have up to three days to redeem your reservation. One important item to note, and a big difference between Woot and this app, is that the discounts you receive are not immediate. Instead, they’re provided to you as rebates posted to your MasterCard account. You will actually have to buy the item at full price then wait, usually around two weeks, before the credit is posted. At most, according to the FAQ, this process may take up to 21 days. MasterCard and M-CommerceMasterCard seems intent on tapping into the growing m-commerce trend, potentially a $2.2 billion dollar industry by the end of this year according to ABI Research. The Marketplace app is just one of many the company has launched for the device in recent months. It also has MoneySend, a person-to-person mobile payments application, Easy Savings Program, an app that locates nearby discounts from participating merchants, Priceless Picks, an app that lets shoppers share great deals with each other anywhere around the world and an ATM finder application. Unfortunately for Android users, the only app MasterCard has ported to that platform is its one-off app, “Flavours of Shanghai 2010,” designed specifically for EXPO 2010. Related Posts Role of Mobile App Analytics In-App Engagement sarah perez Tags:#mobile#NYT#Product Reviews#Trends#web MasterCard recently launched a new mobile application called “MasterCard Marketplace Overwhelming Offers,” which delivers daily deals to iPhone users. Despite its mouthful of a name, savvy shoppers planning on purchasing a big-ticket item in the near future may want to keep an eye on this one. Like the popular Internet retailer Woot (just bought by Amazon), the app provides deeply discounted items, available in limited quantities for a limited time. At 12 p.m. Eastern (GMT – 4:00) every day, a new deal is posted to the mobile app, offering “door-buster” type savings of 50% or more on brand-name products from a network of over 28,000 merchants. The offers are made available thanks to MasterCard’s partnership with e-commerce company Next Jump, which already powers the desktop version of the MasterCard Marketplace website, launched in April. Some of the past “OO’s” (overwhelming offers), as they’re called, have included deals like $100 off flights booked via Priceline.com, $50 off anything at TigerDirect.com, $25 off Target merchandise, $100 off Wal-Mart merchandise, $75 off the Barnes & Noble eBook Reader, $50 off digital cameras at Staples, $100 off a Nintendo Wii from Kmart and much more. How to Play… err… ShopThere’s a game-like element to scoring these deals, too. They launch at a given time and sell out fast – sometimes even in seconds, so you have to be quick to win the chance to purchase these items. To get a heads up about what deal is launching when, shoppers can sign up for email alerts that are sent out several hours prior to the OO start time and detail pricing, quantities available and other descriptive info about the product. last_img read more

Inmates ‘bare’ plot to kill CWG accused

first_imgTwo murder convicts lodged in Tihar Jail have made the sensational claim that jail officials provided them with weapons to kill two tainted former members of the Commonwealth Games (CWG) organising committee (OC) who are also in the jail.Amit and Nishant, two brothers who are serving a life term, told chief metropolitan magistrate (CMM) Vinod Yadav on Tuesday that they were given a knife and a country made revolver – a knife has been recovered from their barracks – to kill two of the three ex-CWG officials accused in the Queen’s Baton Relay scam now lodged in Tihar.While three former CWG officials T. S. Darbari, Sanjay Mahendroo and M. Jeychandran – who were aides of OC boss Suresh Kalmadi – are in jail, the convicts did not say which two were to be their targets.However, they told the court that they were being repeatedly pressured by the Tihar Jail authorities to carry out the killings or face dire consequences. The murder convicts told the CMM that Amit had been transferred from Jail No. 4 to the high-risk ward of Jail No. 5 and was being regularly threatened.A knife has been recovered from the jail premises based on the leads provided by the duo. About the pistol, Amit and Nishant told the court that it had been taken back by the jail officials.The recovery of the knife was put in the court’s records.”A knife was recovered from their barrack. Let a report from SHO (station house officer) Hari Nagar police station be called for December 24,” the CMM said while marking the case to the court concerned for the next hearing.advertisementThe lead-up to the shocking claim started on December 18. The two brothers had moved a request before a magistrate in Saket saying they wanted to disclose some important information against Tihar officials and could provide the court with the relevant evidence.The court immediately ordered the SHO of Hari Nagar to accompany the convicts to the jail from where the police recovered the knife. The case was then referred to the CMM Tis Hazari for further hearing. On Tuesday, the CMM directed the SHO to file a detailed status report on the case.The application moved before the CMM by the two brothers does not mention the possible motive behind the move to kill the former OC officials.Of the three officials, Darbari, who had been OC joint director general (revenue, marketing and chairman secretariat) and Mahendroo, who had been OC deputy director general of marketing were arrested on November 15 while Jeychandran, formerly OC treasurer, was arrested on November 21.All the accused are facing charges of causing losses to the state exchequer in the award of contracts to the tune of `1.55 crore with regard to the Queen’s Baton Relay (QBR) in London in November last year ahead of the Delhi Commonwealth Games.The former officials are charged with causing wrongful losses in the award of contract to M/s AM Car and Van Hire Limited for various functions relating to the conduct of the QBR.However, the Tihar Jail authorities strongly denied the allegations levelled against them by the two murder convicts and instead blamed the brothers of being serial offenders. ” The complaint filed by the convicts was an attempt to take revenge on the jail officials who recently separated the two brothers by lodging them in two different jails,” said Sunil Gupta, law officer of the Tihar Jail.Coming out strongly in favour of the jail officials, Gupta claimed that Amit and Nishant were running a gang in Jail No. 4 along with an undertrial, whom he identified as Pawan. The authorities, on receiving numerous complaints against them from the inmates, lodged all the three accused in different jails.Hence, to settle scores with them, Amit and Nishant had moved the application before the CMM, the law officer said.According to Gupta, the weapon recovered from the jail premises at the instance of the duo was not a knife.”All inmates are frisked cautiously and it was not a knife that was recovered but a spoon that had been sharpened by the accused persons by rubbing it on the floor,” said Gupta.Meanwhile, the mother of the two convicts, Munni Devi also moved an application before the CMM alleging that the brothers were facing threats. She named some persons and jail officials in her application. The CMM, meanwhile, marked the case to additional chief metropolitan magistrate Sunil Chaudhary for further hearing on December 24.JAIL INTRIGUE AGAINST KALMADI AIDESadvertisementT. S. DARBARIARRESTED ON: November 15POST HELD: Joint director general (revenue, marketing and chairman secretariat)CHARGED WITH: Corruption, forgery, cheating & abuse of positionROLE IN SCAM: Awarded work at Queen’s Baton Relay to AM Car & Van Hire at exorbitant rates without following standard tender process & on false premise, the CBI said. Accused of forging emails to justify selectionSANJAY MAHENDROOARRESTED ON: November 15POST HELD: Deputy director general (marketing)CHARGED WITH: Corruption, forgery, cheating & abuse of positionROLE IN SCAM: Awarded work to London- based AM Car & Van Hire at exorbitant rates without following the standard tender process and on false premise. Also accused of forging emails to justify the selectionM. JEYCHANDRANARRESTED ON: November 21 POST HELD: TreasurerCHARGED WITH: Corruption, forgery, cheating & abuse of positionROLE IN SCAM: Mahendroo sent a fax to Jeychandran in India asking the amount due to the firm be released immediately. Mahendroo said it had been approved by OC chief Suresh Kalmadi. The CBI accused him of being part of the conspiracyACCUSEDBrothers Amit and Nishant Prasad, residents of Badarpur, have been in jail since the past three years. They have been sentenced to life imprisonment in a murder case. They claimed Tihar jail officials provided them a countrymade pistol and a knife to eliminate two of the three CWG officials in judicial custodyTHE LONDON SCAMIn October 2009, the baton relay for the Games was launched by Queen Elizabeth II in the presence of President Pratibha Patil. The OC organised the event. The CBI has accused Darbari & Mahendroo of entering into a dubious deal with AM Car & Van Hire Ltd. The work was awarded on the false premise that the firm was on the panel of Indian High Commission, London.This caused losses of  Rs 1.55 crore to the exchequerlast_img

UPSC exam to be held as per schedule on Aug 24: Govt

first_imgCivil services aspirants are agitating against more weightage given to English in the exam.The civil services examination will be held as per schedule on August 24, the Indian government declared on Thursday in Parliament, while saying that consultations will be held with various parties and stakeholders on the matter after the current session.”As for this year, there is no scope for postponement of (UPSC preliminary) examination,” Parliamentary Affairs Minister M Venkaiah Naidu said as opposition created uproar in Rajya Sabha demanding an all-party meeting immediately.Civil services aspirants are agitating against more weightage given to English in the exam.Naidu said the UPSC issue requires “deep” study and discussion with political parties and other stakeholders as there are both sides of the argument about the CSAT in UPSC.”…after the session, government is ready to discuss it with all” to reach a consensus, he said, adding the government has taken a correct decision in this regard and minds of students should not be disturbed.As members insisted for all-party meeting before August 24, Minister of State for Parliamentary Affairs Prakash Javadekar said there is already a view among many members that it will not be possible to find a solution to the issue immediately.”An all-party meeting has to take place to discuss wider reforms. We will inform about the date later on,” he said.Earlier, government had announced marks of English will not be included for gradation or merit in UPSC exam.As soon as the House met for the day, opposition parties including SP and BSP raised the issue and demanded that government should immediately call an all-party meeting to resolve the matter as it affects lakhs of students.advertisementIn the Lok Sabha, AIADMK leader M Thambidurai made a strong plea that the UPSC exam should be conducted in all regional languages to provide level-playing field to students from all over the country.last_img read more

Russell Peters Junos jokes inappropriate says heritage minister

first_imgAdvertisement LEAVE A REPLY Cancel replyLog in to leave a comment Advertisement Advertisement Login/Register With: OTTAWA—Comments made by comedian Russell Peters while hosting the Junos on Sunday night are not welcome by Heritage Minister Melanie Joly.Peters, who hosted the music awards ceremony in Ottawa along with musician Bryan Adams, called the minister “hot” before introducing her on stage.He also commented on the number of young women in the audience, suggesting it was a “felony waiting to happen.” Facebook Twitter Joly says Peters’ comments were clearly inappropriate, adding this type of humour does not have a place at the Junos.The minister says she is proud to represent an industry worth $53 billion, noting Canada is the third largest exporter of music in the world.Peters’ “felony” joke raised some eyebrows on social media as soon as it was uttered but it wasn’t the sole bit of controversy in the evening; during an acceptance speech by two members of the Tragically Hip, the show cut them off and went to commercial just as they were starting to mention their bandmate Gord Downie, currently battling terminal brain cancer.last_img read more