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Monument swaps massacre site

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The New Dawn Liberia The New Dawn LiberiaThe infamous massacre site in the Waterside Community of Du-port Road outside Monrovia where unarmed people perceived to belong to certain ethnic groups were summarily executed and dumped in a mass grave during the civil war in 1990 has been swapped by a US$59,000 worth monument.

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President Ellen Johnson – Sirleaf, accompanied to the site by government officials and the Independent National Commission on Human Rights or INCHR and partners including the UN, cut ribbon to the monument on Wednesday morning, 8 March before laying wreaths to other grave sites elsewhere in Monrovia.

During a tour of grave sites on National Decoration Day, President Sirleaf laid wreaths at a mass grave in the premises of the St. Peter Lutheran Church in Sinkor where former president Charles Taylor’s father Mr. Philip Nelson Taylor is listed among several victims buried after an astonishing massacre that took place inside the church.

President Sirleaf says government may not be able to do the entire 155massacre sites identified by the INCHR, but noted something symboliccould be done to memorialize all of those places.

She assured the INCHR of government’s commitment to work with it, and thanked partners including the UNDP that managed the funds through the Peace Building Funds to get the project work successfully.

Having commended the new group of commissioners at INCHR for startingin the spirit for which the commission was established, PresidentSirleaf said there was now a roadmap to follow.

She, however, challenged residents at the Waterside Community of Du-portRoad to take care of the newly erected monument, noting that they musthave felt the hurt on grounds that some of them may have witnessed theincident that had others lost their lives during the war.

An official at INCHR Mr. Adolphus Wade said the Peace Building Funds provided US$59,000 for the project, and it was managed by the UNDP.

While remembering the dead, UN SRSG to Liberia Mr. FaridZarif urgedthat “we” must not forget that there are tens of thousands whosurvived the war but are carrying deep wounds of the war.

He warned that without peace in the mind, there can be no peace in thecommunity, urging the need to reach out to all schools, churches andmosques in the society.-Edited by Othello B. Garblah

 

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