Court Resumes after Mid-Morning Break. Examination of Witness TF1-584 Continues

12:00(12:45 with 45 mins delay in video and audio): Court resumes after mid-morning break.

Judge: I apologise for the delay after the break. You may proceed Mr. Santora

Pros: Ms. Witness, You have refered a lot to Major Sellay, can you spell his name?

Wit: Sele, but he spelled it Sellay.

Pros: One other matter before we continue, you said Senegalese told you he was from Liberia. Did he tell you why he came from Liberia?

Wit: Yes, he said Taylor had sent him to Bockarie and Bockarie had sent him to Superman.

pros: Do you know the month and year you arrived at Koinadugu?

Wit: It was in August, 1998.

Pros: You talked about various forces and units in Koinadugu, what do you know about the Red Lion Battalion?

Wit: The Red Lion battalion that was comprised of Superman, the STF, the SLA and the RUF. There was originally an old Red Lion battalion that comprised just the SLAs

Pros; When was the new Red Lion battalion formed?

Wit: After i arrived in Koinadugu, the very day i arrived there, the next day the battalion was formed.

Pros: Was there a commander to this battalion?

Wit: yes, Col. 05 and Maj. CY was the deputy

pros: How many people were in this battalion?

Wit: About 300

Pros: Do you know why it was formed?

Wit: It was formed by Superman to go and join the SLAs that were cut off at Rosos

Pros:How do you know that?

Wit: I was present when they were leaving and Superman told me they were going there.

Pros: Did the battalion have any radio operators?

Wit: yes, Alfred Browne, King Perry, Elongima.

Pros: How long did you stay in Koinadugu?

Wit: I was there for more than a month

Pros; What were your activities there?

Wit: I was still operating under Superman as radio operator

Pros: Do you know where this battalion went?

Wit: They went to Rosos

Pros: How dod you know that?

Wit: I was there when they left and i was present when Superman told them what to do and when they got to Rosos, 05 communicated with Superman that they had arrived there.

Pros: Where did you go after you left Koinadugu?

Wit: I went to a village called Pumkin Ground

Pros: Do you know the name of the village?

Wit: I know the name but cannit recall it now

Pros: Why was it calle Pumkin Ground?

Wit: the time we went there, civilians left the twon. the place was bushy and there were lots of pumkins in the town

Pros: How far away was Pumkin Ground from Koinadugu?

Wit: It was at the side of Koinadugu town, more than 7 miles away.

Pros: Were you still operating on the radio at this time?

Wit: Ye

 Pros: Who did you go there with?

Wit: Superman, Lansana, Tall Bai Bureh, gen. Bupleh, Gugumeh, Col. Titues, there were some other commanders

Pros: Who was Gen. Bopleh?

Wit: I knew that he led the STF

Pros: How manay combatants went with you?

Wit: Upto 400

Pros: How long were you at Pumkin Ground?

Wit: More than one month, nearly two months

Pros: Why did you leave Pumkin Ground?

Wit: We left Pumkin Ground for Makeni

Pros: Why?

Wit: At the time we came to Pumkin Ground, Superman was still the head, because it was in Koinadugu that SAJ Musa left us. We left to go and attack Makeni

Pros: Did you group actually attack Makeni?

Wit: yes

 Pros: When?

Wit: Dec. 1998

Pros: Who actually attacked Makeni?

Wit: Rambo’s group came from Magboraka end from Kono and entered Makeni. Superman’s group, we passed through Binkolo and entered Makeni.

Pros: Who do you mean by Rambo’s group?

Wit: RUF Rambo and Short Bai Bureh

Pros: How long did it take from Pumkin Ground to the attack on makeni?

Wit: 1 month and a half

Pros: Were you working on the radio at this time?

Wit: yes

 Pros: Who was Superman in communication with from Pumkin Ground to Makeni?

Wit: We communicated with Buedu station, we also communicated with Rosos, and Yormandu, and for us radio operators, we communicated to our friend s in the other stations.

Pros: How often were you in communication with Buedu?

Wit: We the operators, everyday when we switched on the radio, we spoke to our colleagues in Buedu, because they said we were no longer RUF because we had joined SAJ Musa but we the radio operators spoke to each other.

Pros: What would you talk about from Pumkin Ground to Makeni?

Wit: Whenever we witched the radio, we’ll tell them where we were and what the situation was.

Pros: So what happened on your way bto Makeni?

Wit: When we got to Bumbuna, a jet came and bombed which cost the lives of many people. So we went to a place to find time to cure the injured people. That was where we were when we heard that Rambo and Bai Bureh had captured Koidu from ECOMOG and were advancing towards Makeni. So when they came, Superman formed an advance team to go to Makeni

Pros: So who led the advance team?

Wit: col. T

Pros: Was Makeni actually attacked?

Wit: yes

 Pros: How

Wit: When they went, at that time rambo and others had entered Makeni from Magburaka road and according to the report Col. T sent, they passed through Binkolo right upto the barracks but they could not enter the barracks. So they withdrew back to Binkolo.

Pros: How did you know about all these?

Wit: I knew that through the message Col. T sent to Superman. When they went to Makeni, they were able to capture a radio. They used it to send the message.

Pros: What happened when they withdrew to Binkolo

Wit: When Col. T sent the message, we moved from our location and joined Col. T in Binkolo and together, we attacked Makeni. We attacked the barracks at Teko.

Pros: Did youy remember the day you entered Makeni?

Wit: I cannot recall the day but it was Dec. 25, 1998

Pros: Who was in control of Makeni when you went there?

Wit: the ECOMOG and the loyal SLA to the government.

Pros: How did they lose control of the barracks?

Wit: The moment when my own group, ie Superman;s Groupd joind Col. T and we wnet to makeni, we met Bai Bureh at Teko road, then Superman and I were siting when he spoke with Superman. He was supposed to go and show the barracks to Superman. From that moment, we did not rest for an hour when we attacked Teko Barracks. there was a school along the way called MCA, when we met an armoured car coming our way. We started fighting from that point. We entered the barracks at night and we were there till 5:30am. We started around 3:30 in the afternoon and i left the barracks around 5:30.

Pros: When approximately did the battle end?

Wit: 5:30 to 5:45 in the morning on the 26th.

Pros: Where were you on Jan. 6 1999?

Wit: I was in Lunsar

Pros: can you describe what happened in Lunsar on that day?

Wit: I was living in the same house where Superman was and that was the same house where the radio was. I operated that day but not for the whole day. On Jan. 7th, early in the morning.

Pros: lets take it step by step, did you hear anything on Jan 6?

Wit: No. It was Jan. 7, in the morning when BBC gave the news, then i heard rebels had entered Freetown and had captured State House. I came out of my room and switched on the radio. That was around 7am. there were radio men that went to Freetown. The group that left Rosos, they were the ones who entered Freetown. That was the Red Lion battalion men that joined the men at Roso, together with SAJ Musa’s men.

Pros: Where were you getting this information from?

Wit: At the time i knew that the men at Rosos had entered Freetown, i first got that from BBC. Then when i switched on the radio, the men were also calling that they had entered Freetown. They called Sam Bockarie

Pros: What else did you hear on the radio set?

Wit: Gullit spoke to Bockariee and the operators who were there, King Perru, 05, they spoke to us that they had captured State House and that they had freed prisoners at Pademba Road.

Pros:You said Gullit and King Perry spoke, do you know what they spoke about?

Wit: The capture of State House and the release of prisoners

Pros: Did they say the names of the prisoners?

Wit: Yes, Gibril Massaquoi, Ex-President Momoh, Steve Bio, Mathew Moinama, and some other men in the AFRC.

Pros: You said 05 too spke “to us”, do you remember what he was talking to you aboiut?

Wit: he spoke to us about the capture of state house and how they were happy. He spoke to us about Gibril Massaquoi and how they released the prisoners.

Pros: tell us what you heard if anything on radio?

Wit: later, through message that was sent by Gullit to Bockarie, a message came from 05 to Superman which stated how they passed around Waterloo when they went to Freetown. The message told us that they lost SAJ Musa on their way to Freetown and the route they used, what they captured on their way, all came in the form of a message.

Pros:What happened after this message?

Wit: When the men who were in Freetown had passed this message, Bockarie sent a message to Superman to move, he and Rambo to join the men who had entered Freetown.

Pros: How did you know of the message?

Wit: As the operator was sending the message, he will put the from column and the person he was sending it to. I mysself received that message.

Pros: Where was Superman when you received this message?

Wit: He was in Lunsar

pros: Where was Rambo at this time?

Wit: He was in makeni, this was RUF Rambo

Pros: What happened after this message?

Wit: Rambo came with ammunition to us in Lunsar and we were to use that ammunition to go to Freetown

Pros: How do you know Rambi came with ammunition?

Wit: I was at the same house with Superman and i saw it all

Pros: What kind of ammunition did he come with?

Wit: the ones we were using, the AKs, RPG, GPMG, a twin barrel, etc

Pros: Do you know by what means he actually came?

Wit: He came with a pickup and a truck.

Pros: After you received this message from Bockari and Rambo came, what happened?

Wit: We left Lunsar for Freetown.

Pros: Do you remember the day you left Lunsar for Freetown?

Wit: Jan. 8

Pros: Describe the road you took?

Wit: We went to Gbere Junction, we were in the vehicle. we used the main road to Masiaka, onto Waterloo, then to Hastings. That was where we stopped because we were unable to dislodge the ECOMOG troops there. We returned to yams farm, that was where we were based.

Pros: Who was with you at this time?

Wit: Superman, Foday Lansana, Gugumeh, they were the ones with me as commanders

pros: How long did it take you from Lunsar to Hastings?

Wit: We left Lunsar at around 4:00PM and waited at Gbere junction upto 7:00PM because the jet was raiding the highway. We arrived at Hastings early in the morning.

Pros; How many combatants were involved in this movement?

Wit: Upto 200

Pros: During the course of this trip, were you on the radio?

Wit: yes

 Pros: Were you using it?

Wit: That night when we were travelling, i did not but when we came to Yams Farm in the morning, i started using it.

Pros: Can you describe what happened when you got to Hastings?

Wit: We were unable to dislodge the ECOMOG troops. We met fighting had taken place first at 4 mile. We could not have just passed through so there were shootings for some hours but becasue of the river around the town, we coulddnt enter Hastings.

Pros: Do you know how long you engaged ECOMOG at Hastings?

Wit: Almost 2 and half hours

Pros: can you tell us some of the things you heard while operating the radio?

Wit: I first called Buedu station and told them we were at yams Farm and we were unable to enter Hastings. We were expecting that the troops in Freeetown will come and so we’ll join them there but at that timne, ECOMOG had dislodegd them from State House.

Pros: Who specifically did yoy send the message to?

Wit: To Sam Bockarie

pros: Can you explain the communication relating to State House?

Wit: the commiunication i am talking about, whereby it was Gullit who sent the message that ECOMOG has pushed them out fo State House and that fighting was going in in Freetown. After he had sent the message, Bockarie asked whether Gullit and others still had the prisoners with them. he said yes. he said that if ECOMOG forced them out of Freetown, they should “burn the fucking place” and should not spare anything. He said that verbally.

Pros: Was there any response from Gullit?

Wit: he answered yes sir

Pros: Where were you at this time?

Wit: yams farm

Pros: How many days had it taken when you heard this from the time you got to Yams Farm?

Wit: One day

Pros: can you describe Sam Bockarie’s tone at this time?

Wit: he was angry, he spoke with power

pros: Do you know what he meant when he said they should not spare anything?

Wit: If i can say, property, house, human being, that means everything.

Pros: How long did you remain at Yams farm?

Wit: Over two weeks, before i came to Lunsar

Pros: Who was Gullit?

Wit: One of the SLA commanders in the AFRC.

pros: After you heard that the men in Freetown had lost the State House, what happened?

Wit: Bockarie gave an oder to Superman to stay at yams farm to ensure there was a safe corridor for those coming from Freetown.

pros: Did Superman comply with this order?

Wit: yes

Judge: Mr. Santora, i note the time. We will take our usual lunch time break and we’ll resume at 2:30. Please adjourn court to 2:30.