9:30: (10:00 with 30 mins delay in video and audio): Witness testifies with facial and voice distortion.
Judge: Court is in session. If there are no prelimenary matters, i will remind the witness of his oath.
Pros: Mr. Witness, where were you at the time of the invasion of Sierra Leone in 1991?
Witr; I was in Siama, not far from Bumaru
Pros: Were you involved in fighting against the invading fighting?
Wit: At the initial stage no
Pros; Were you ever engaged in fighting in the Kailahun District?
Pros: Yes, after the attacks, we the young soldiers were egnaged to repel the attacks?
Wit: Where were you engaged?
Wit: When the rebels started attacking, an officer by the name of Lt. Kargbo asked his soldoiers to go with him to check what was happening in Bumaru. They left and ran into an ambushy and he died. So after that, they pushed further and it was at that tiome that i got engaged in the war.
Pros: Is Siamah in Kailahun district?
Pros: Can you tell us how long you were fighting in Kailahun during the initial invasion and for how long were you involved there?
Wit: I started at Siama, they told us that we should attack Koindu but we were unsuuceesful. We retreated to Daru. We were there till Rambo wanted to capture Daru and i was involved in the fighting. In 1993, i was commissioned as 2nd Lt. and i was posted back to the Daru barracks. At that time, RUF had the entire Kailahun district except Daru Barracks. At some point, the NPRC were in power. Strasser visited us in Pendembu and addressed us. We decided to advance and capture some of the grounds RUF had taken. For eg, we first moved to Ngehun, then we moved to Kailahun. It did nor just happen immediately. There are some places i engaged the enemy for 72 hours before we could push them to Kailahun. In Kailahun, we engaged them for 89 hours after they had occupied Kailahun for over three years. In Kailahun, there were two tracks. So we fought along those two tracks until we captured Koindu.
Pros: In your answer, you said one of the tracks led to Buedu and then where did the other lead to?
Wit: One that was after kailahun was Gbalahun, Dia, then you go to Koindu. The other one from Kailahun to Buedu.
Pros: Who were you fighting against in the Kailahun district?
Wit: RUF and some of the capotured men were Liberians, especially when we interrogate some of them they will say they are Gio people from Liberia. At times, some of them were directly from BUrkin Faso, all of them fighting alongside the RUF.
Pros:During the time that you were engaged in the fighting in Kailahun, did you ever run accross the check points of the enemy forces?
Wit: yes, for eg, when we were advancing to Kailahun, i saw heads that had been cut off and planted on check points and some of them wrote notes and stuck them into the mouths of those heads. Because when we were fighting, we were searching for important documents. I saw amputated limbs, all meant to scare advancing forces. At a point in time, we took out the notes in the mouths of those heads and from those notes we learnt that they were people fighting with Sankoh but they had betrayed Sankoh and he ordered their execution.
Pros: When you said you saw notes and learnt that Sankoh had ordered their execution, can you describe the ages and gender of the heads you saw?
Wit: I can recall that majority of the heads were males. I only saw the head pf one female. As we went on the advance, we observed the Geneva Convention so when we captured enemies, we asked them questions to get information. And one of such people told me that one of the heads was that of Sankoh’s wife. The other head was fair in complexion. He told us that that was one of the men at FBC who protested against Siaka Stevens regime and had escaped to Libya. he said because they conived against Sankoh, thats why we were able to push the enemy from Kailahun. That was the inforamtion i got from the enemy. He said the man’s name was called Rashid. During the 1970s, there were some people like Hindolo Trye who protested against Shiaka Stevens and Rashid was one of the studenst who escaped to Libya and helped Sankoh start that revolotion.
Pros: Do you know someone named Ngauja?
Wit: Yes, he was a serving soldier in the Sierra Leone army
Pros: Do you know what happened to him?
Wit: I can remember after we had pushed the enemy upto the Guinean border, we heard from the leader, ie, Strassee that we were to grant them amnesty so that we’ll be able to end hostilities. At that time, all of us were happy that the war was about to come to an end. Some of them surrendered. During that time, half of Kailahun district was no longer occupied by the enemy. That gave them the opprtunity to regroup and use the other way going towards Jojuima and they made use of some weaknesses of the army. Some of the members of the army thought the enemy was no more fighting. So the enemy hit Normor Farma and the war started again. During that time, the army was focused on clearing that area. That was when Ngauja was captured. By the time we saw him again, his two hands were cut off., They wrote a note and hung it on his neck. They sent it to Tom Nyuma who was fighting in the East of the country.
Pros: Can you remember where he was capotured?
Wit: Normoh Farma, in the kenema axis
Pros: Did you actually yourself see Ngauja?
Wit: When they brough the letter, at that particular moment, i was not present at the ground but after he had been brought to the medical office, i saw him.
Pros; I am going to be moving through the years very quickly.
Judge: Do we have a time for the amputation of Ngauja?
Pros: Witness, do you know when this happened?
Wit: I wouldnt want to guess here but i know it was during Strasser’s regime in the 1990s.
Pros; Do you recall where you were at the time of the 1996 election of Sierra Leone?
Wit: I was in Liberia as a peace keeper
Pros: Can you explain what your job was at that time?
Wit: As a peace keeper and i was a Lt, i became Platoon Commander, and later a Company Commmander before i returned home
Pros: What peace keeping force were you with?
Pros: Where were you stationed in Liberia?
Wit: Well, my cotingent headquarters was close to Freeport but i worked at places like Hotel Africa, the Red Light, then i worked at some other different road points established within the city.
Pros: Do you recall for how long you served with ECOMOG?
Wit: yes, i can recall that i served for over 8 months in Liberia.
Pros: Thank you. I next want to go to the coup in Freeton on May 25 1997. Where were you at that time?
Wit: I was in Kenema, serving with the 18th Battalion, and on a Sunday morning, we heard on BBC when Corporal Gborie announced that the junior soldoiers had taken over power from Kabba.
Pros: What was the reaction to the announcement among your forces?
Wit: Well, to be frank, everybopdy reacted in his own way, But like for me and some other junior soldoiers, we thought it was necessary at that time because there were certain things happening which were not in place. Like the formatioon of the kamajors. At the initial stage. they were fighting alomngside the army, but at some point, they used to attack our positions and that made us disgruntled. No body could stop what was happening, So we all reacted differently. Because the senior officers and the politicians could not stop it.
Pros: Were there others who opposed it among the SLAs?
Wit: Yes, some people opposed it. Most of those who opposed it fled to Lungi, where supprters of the Democratic government had gone. There are some who supported the democratic giovernment who did not go away but could not say it.
Pros: Where exactly in kenema where you?
Wit: I was inside the Kenema town
Pros: What was the reaction of the Kamajors to the coup?
Wit: First, they opposed the coup and infact at some point, they started mounting up check points along the highways. At those check points, any soldier who was caught onboard any vehicle will be brough down and his throat will be slit off.
Pros: What happened in Kenema at the time of the coup?
Wit: Just like i said, there were some places along the kenema highway like Jembe, Blama, Zimmi, those roads were blocked by the Kamajors and we got reports that some soldiers in the goivernment bus were brought off and killed.
Pros: So what did you do when you learned about the coup?
Wit: I personally and the five men i had, when the coup took place, there was no contriol. So i came to Freetonw with my men because my family was there.
Pros: What did you do when you go to Freetown?
Wit: Well, i reported at the army headquarters. the time i am refereing to, the army chief of staff had been replaced. Everything was under the AFRC control. When i came to Freetown, at that tyime, most of the snior officers did not coorperate with the AFRC and some were considered to be cowards. The AFRC was looking for brave officers and i was one of them. I was spoken to to work with them and i did. And by that, i got some appointments from them.
Pros; In what part of the country were you based when you joineed them?
Wit: I was in the City working at the defense headquarters, close to State House. My role at that time was to protect the city from looting and to prevent some people who will want to seize advantage of the situation. So we set up the Westeran Area Security Patrol (WASP)
Pros; What was the reaction of the civilians to the coup?
Wit: It was a mixed reaction. Some supported and some were opposed.
Pros; Can you tell us if you specifically witnessed and civilian opposition to the AFRC?
Wit: yes, some civilinans did not oppose right after the coup. They did so when RUF came to the city and started misbehaving. For eg, i remember the student demonstration to show the international community that they did not support the coup.
Pros: So what happended during that demonstration?
Wit: I can recall when the students took to the streest of Freetown and AFRC troops, some of us in WASP, security to then Supreme Council members, we were ordered to stop the strike action. I can recall when we were about to stop the action peacefully, like beating them, some of Issa’s bodyguards opened fire at the nursing home and no body could stop them. Some students had bullet wounds. I can recall a male nursing student had two gun shots and died. Some female students were captured, even some male students, were put into a vehicle and taken away. I dont know where some were taken to but some were taken to Pademba Rioad prisons.
Pros: Did you remain in Freetown through out the Junta rule or you had another assignment?
Wit: I was later sent to Tongo, that is because another officer, Capt. Bangura, a soldier mistakenly shot him and he died. So i was sent there. I was there right upto the end of the AFRC regime.
Pros: What happend in Tongo when the intervention occured?
Wit: I remember again when the intervention occured, most of the senior men who were in kenema at that time like the resident minister at that time Eddie Kanneh, Sam Bockarie and others who were mining in Tongo started hastening up with the mining so that everyone will have his portion of diamonds.
Pros: Did you pull out of Tongo?
Wit: Yes we did.
Pros: Did any other force attack the AFRC/RUF in Tongo at that time?
Wit: yes, the Kamajors attacked us in Tongo and some other small villages. The ECOMOG which was in Liberia moved from Monrovia along the highway from Koindu coming to Kenema.
Pros: Did the AFRC/RUF in Tongo have any heavy weapons before the intervention?
Wit: yes, like SPG, Anti aircraft weapons, RPG 7, which we used.
Pros: What kind of a shell does SPG fire?
Wit: It fires bigger shells
Pros: Is it a long or short barrel weapon?
Wit: Its a long barrel weapon. It has a wheel at the back. It can only move with a vehicle. Its an Isreali made weapon.
Pros; So what happened to those heavy weapons?
Wit: Well, i can remember, like for the twin barrel, Sam Bockarie took it to Buedu. He took some other weapons too. Like the SPG, it was difficult to go with that, so it stayed behind.
Pros: What happened to it when it stayed behind?
Wit: Like i said, during that time, some of the artillary personnel were in disaray. We were all running for our lives so we left the weapons.
Pros; Did you leav it to the forces that were pushing you?
Pros; Do you know what happned to the weapons in Freetown?
Wit: I was not in Freetown but the men who came from Freetown told us that they had left the weapons in Freetown.
Pros: Cam you describe what effect the intervention had in changing the relatriuonship between the AFRC and the RUF?
Wit: Yes, it was some of those effects that made most of us not to stay with the RUF because they were blaming some of us that we didnt want to fight. At that time, Bockarie had the command. And some of us didnt want yto be molested and we heard of some of the people who were molseted. Our fighting spirit was killed and some of us were in hiding.
Pros: How was the relationship between the RUF and AFRC in Freetown?
Wit: It was really corrdial. I know that some of them were even in the Supreme Council, like Issa Sesay, Peter Vandy, Mike Lamin, etc, so the relationship was cordial.
Pros; Can you briefly tell us about your movement after the intervention.
wit: Yes, after my withdrawal from Tongo and some other SLAs and RUF had withdrawn from Kenema. We all met at Daru barracks. We had plans to understudy the situation so that we’ll regroup and repel the enemy forces from kenema. That did not work because the enemy came with heavy fire power. They had three Alpha Jets. They bombarded us seriously. Because of that we all went on dissaray. Some of the SLAs in Kenema and daru, most of them ran with their entire families. While the advancing troops were coming, any body who was an associate or friend of RUF was expected to be killed. So we ran away.
Pros: Can you tell us where you went?
Wit: I went to Bunumbu, i was there for sometime, when we understood that Bockarioe had authrised a commander called Ben Kenneh to mount a check point along one of those areas and whoever passed that area, whether RUF or AFRC must be searched. Some men were searched, their monies and diamonds taken from them. That was why me and my five men decided to use a bypass. So i tried to push up and i was finally able to cross the Moa. After crossing the Moa, i decided that i will not surface within any big town, where RUF were. While we were running away, we came accross some personal that JPK and his wife had been arrested and most of the Supreme Council members had been beaten. Three months after the intervention, we were just moving in the bushes so we can find our way to Liberia. I struggled with my men till we got to Buedu. I finally brossed over to Foya, Lofa County.
Pros: Can you give us an estimate of how long that was after the intervention?
Def: he just said three months.
Pros: Where did you do after Foya?
Wit: Eventually, i found myself in Monrovia and that was where i was, around Duala.
Pros; Can you tells us when that was after the intervention?
Wit: After the intervention, it was about three months to Foya and to Monrovia, it was equally not easy at that time because there were road blocks there as well. I also did three months to get to Monrovia. In Monrovia, i liveed my life as a complete civilian.
Pros; Did you have any money with you to take care of yourself?
Wit: yes, i had money with me, but at that time, we did not do any business or trade and it was that money that i sued to support myself and my five soldiers.
Pros: Where were you staying at that time?
Wit: I was staying at Duala, in Monrovia as an ordinary civilian. Its close to a big market place.
Pros; Did you stay in Duala or did you move at some point?
Wit: I used to move around but i stayed at Duala, until after january 6 1999, when i heard Bockarie over the BBC. It was only some months after January 6 that all i had with me had completely finished and my survival was not easy. And when i was there as a peacekeeper, i had established friendhsip with some people. So decided to visit a lady by the name of Matilda who lived in Kongo Town close to the Late Tubman’s house. I explained myself to her. I even told her that i did not have a place top stay. So she accomodated me and she adviced me that i should be very careful the way i move aroiund until we are able to assess the situation and i’ll return to my country.
Pros: On Jan 6 when you heard Bockarie on BBC, can you expplain what you mean?
Wit: That was the time Bockarie went over BBC and said the city had been captured by our men, ie, the AFRC/RUF, and if they did not try to bring a peaceful settlement and if thay tried to force them out of the city, they will burn the entire city. He was very frequent over the news.
Pros: Which city was he talking about?
Pros: What year was the January 6 attack?
Pros; What was the name of the woman that you went to see?
Wit: Matilda Johnson
Pros: When did you first in your life meet this lady?
Wit: When i was a peacekeeper, and at that time, things were difficult with me especially for food.
Pros; Who was she when you were a peacekeeper?
Wit: She was an NPFL lady, a general specialised in artillary.
Pros: So what was her position when you saw her now in Monrovia?
Wit: She told me that she was in charge of the airfield.
Pros: What did she do for you after you spoke to her?
Wit: She assisted me to get a place. I left Duala and went to Congo Town at her place.
Pros: Did you meet some pople that you recognized from Sierra Leone later?
Wit: Yes, that was after i had stayed with Matilda for sometime. But whatever happens, when you live in a different place, you will not be ok. I was very eager to know what was happening in Sierra Leone. So one day, i decided to move from the place and went direct to the ECOMOG base at the Freeport. So there, i met with some Sierra Leoneans. There was a Sierra Leonean woman who used to sell Sierra Leone dish. So i met with Tamba Brima’s wife, Magarette, Bazzy’s wife Anifa, Momoh Dorty, and some other Sierra Leoneans.
Pros: What happened when you met them?
Wit: Momor Dorty’s wife, Patricia asked where i had been all this while. I told her i have been in Monrovia. She asked why i had not been coming to the river side, i said it was difficult. She said some of my SLA colleagues had returned and were fighting alondside the RUF. She said instead of staying in Liberia and suffer, why not get to Sierra Leone and be with my colleagues. I told her i didnt have a means to go and she said she will link me with Bockarie so we can talk. We were there when two Sierra Leoneans, Bami and K1 came and they told me they will inform Bockarie and Eddie Kanneh about my being in Liberia and they said they will make arrangements for me to go and join the fighting troops, instead of struglling in Liberia.
Pros: Who was Bamie?
Wit: He was a kind of Liaison between interested SLAs and businessment and Bockarie and Eddie Kanneh.
Pros; What was his nationality?
Wit: He was a Sierra Leone. I had known him since i was in Tongo. he was in charge of diamond miners for Bockarie and Eddie Kanneh.
Pros; Can you tell us anything about K1?
Wit: he was Bamie’s friend. They were always operating hand in hand. They were both men who had knowlege of diamonds.
Pros: What did you do after this conversation?
Wit: I ended up showing Bamie where i was staying. He told me he will come and collect me when he talks to Bockarie and Eddie Kanneh.
Pros: When did you next see him?
Wit: One day after the previous day, he alighted from a taxi. He told me that he had got intouch with Bockarie and Ededie Kanneh and they wanted to see me.
Pros: So what happened?
Wit: He told me he was ready to go with me so i will meet with Bockarie and Eddie Kanneh. So went. We got to the YMCA junction at Congo Town. We got out fo the taxi. We moved off the main road and branched to another sttreet. We ended up in a bar and he said we should be there for some time. I met K1 there. They told me to wait till they get intouch with Eddie Kanneh and Bockarie. We were there when Mohamed Saleh, a Libanese diamond dealer came. he had run away from Kenema. We all started taking drinks together. We were there when two gentle men that i had never seen before. they joined us there. Saleh left us there. We were there for a long time. One mong the two men who had just come introduced himself to me as Col. Mazzah. The other said he was Capt. Dennis. They said they were from the mansion. Mazza told me he will like me to be his friend and that i should accompany him to the airport to pick up one of his friends. I took out my military ID card and showed it to him. I took out my certificate on artillary use that i got when the army was equipt. I showed Mazza and he looked at it. Mazaa called me and said he wanted to talk to me.
Pros: What happend when Mazza indicated he wanted to talk to you?
Wit: He called me and we went to the back of the pub. He asked me who the other men were. I told him those men were my fellow Sierra Leoneans. He told me that those men are not my brothers. he said that they had alleged that i was a spy, sent by the Kabbah government to see whether the Taylor government was supporting the RUF/SLA. He said that was the information given by the men. I told him it was a lie. he told me he was the commander for the death squad and said they will investigate me and if they prove it right, i will be killed. He showed me a picture of a lady and said she came to Liberia for the same reason and she was killed. He asked me whether i knew somebody by the name of Rambo. I told him the only Rambo i knew was a Sierra Leonean. he described same person and i realised it was Moses Kabia, CSO to JPK. I told him i knew him. Mazza later told me that was the same thing that man wanted to do. he said he had arrested the man and the man had been killed. I told him that that man was a stammerer and so he had dificulty to talk. He told me that that man did not talk to him the way i am talking to him and so he killed him right away. he said he slit the man’s throat and took out his heart. he told me he was assuring me that if he proved that i was innocent, i will not die. We went back to the pub to join the other guys. We waited there for sometime for Bockarie and Eddie Kanneh to come. We were there and Mazza told me that he was going to take me to see Bockarie and Eddie Kanneh since they had still not arrived.
Pros: How many pictures did Mazza show you?
Wit: It was the picture which i saw that a woman was mutillated. I carried that picture with me for sometime and i later showed to the court in Freetown.
Pros: I will ask that the photo be put on the document cam and the photo is graphic and so do not braodcast it.
Def: The victim is not identified in the photo and so even though it is graphic, i see no reason why it should not be shown. We’ll however like to see it and determine whether it is the original.
Judge: Is the original available for atleast the judges to see. Is it available?
Pros; Do you have the original with you?
Wit: Well, even in Freetown, they asked me for the original but the complication was there between the investigators and me. I have always tried to look out for the original but have not seen it. So i doubt if it is still not with the investigators.
Pros: The bench accepts that the photo is graphic but we have no reason to say why it will not be broadcast. So we say it should be broadcast.
Def: we have still not determined where the original of the photo is.
Judge; We’ll allow counsel to clarify that with the witness. But i have just been informed that the tape is finished and we’ll pursue that after the mid morning break. Please adjourn court for mid-morning break.
Court resumes after mid-morning break.
Judge:Mr. Koumjin please proceed. You were to clarify the issue raised.
Pros: Do you kno where the original of the photograph is?
Wit: I said it could either be with Mr. Alfred Sesay or Mr. David who were the investigators. When they scanned it, i cant remember if they returned it to me.
Pros: Thank you. Can we get the photograph displayed?
Def: Before we do that, can the court order that the prosecution do everything to get this original. I have never had this experience where an exhibit of such importance is not produced in its original.
Judge: Mr Koumjin, you response
Pros: We have conducted a search for this original but we have not got it.
Judge: have you contacted the investigators whose names have been mention?
Pros: No. We’ll try to contact them but i dont know if there is any contact information for them since they no longer work with the court but we’ll search for them. Let me correct something. My understanding is that one of them is still working with the court.
Judge: the Chamber directs that the Prosecution search for the original of the photograph and if found be shown to the court. In the meantime, the scanned copy will be shown to the witness.
Pros: thank you your honour and we’ll send an email to Freetown immediatelly. Sir di you recognize this photograph?
Wit: yes, its one of the photohgraphs that he showed to me to instill fear in me..
Pros: May this photograph be given an MFI number?
Judge: The photograph will be given MFI-16
Pros: Did Mazaa tell you the name of the person in that photograph?
Wit: No, he just told me that the woman was a Sierra Leonean who too had come to spy
Pros: Was more than one photograph given to you or just one photograph?
Wit: I saw other photographs but how i got this one, one of the trousers i used had this photo in the side pocket, and so thats how i took it to Sierra Leone.
Pros: Did Mazaa give you the photograph?
Wit: he showed me the photo. When he was was arguing with Eddie Kanneh, he left this photo in my hand and so i put it in my pocket.
Pros: And what happened?
Wit: he said i should go with him. He said since Eddie Kanneh and Bockarie had not come, i should go with him and we’ll meet Eddie Kanneh.
Pros: What did you do then?
Wit: We went because my life was now in God’s hand. We went to see Eddei kanneh at Maazza’s house. He explaiend that he had brought this man and Eddie Kanneh got annoyed and shouted at him. He said there was no need for Maazza to bring me. He said he should have assasinated me. Mazza said you should not tell me what to do. They had an arguement and they took out guns for each other. While the arguement was going on, i just went behind the flowers. They did not shoot at each other. From there, Maazza said he will show Eddie that this is Liberia. he said as long as i was i was innocent, he will make sure i am not killed.
Pros: Mr witnes, who is Zigzag Maaza?
Wit: Its just the same person that i have called Mazza.
Pros: What happened after this arguement?
Wit: Mazza said that i should go with him. The street was not far from his house. While we were standing ther, he used a radio to make a call. I dont know who he called. We were there when a van came with SSS who had blue uniforms. It was a Toyota Land Cruiser. Mazza said we should go onboard the vehicle and we did.
Pros: What was the role of the SSS?
Wit: The AFR was there but i think they were not that effective. The SSS were the president’s bodyguards.
Pros: Where did you go with the vehicle?
Wit: We drove right down Congo town and we stoped at the junction between Taylor’s house and a drive that ran down. We crossed the street and woalked right down. Down the sloop there were some houses. There was a large swamp at the back of the houses. This was at night. Mazza was saluted at the house by the security there. We entered the gate.
Pros: You said you went to a junction between a drive and Taylor’s house. can you explain this?
Wit; By Taylor’s house., there was a sloop. You will have to go right down and you will see houses. At the back of the houses, there was a swamp.
Pros: Do you know there was another name for Taylor’s house?
Wit: White Flower, Ngangay Mansion
Pros: Where were you taken down the sloop?
Pros; There was a house that had a small gate. In that compund, he took me to a verandah. he called a man that i never knew in my life. the man came and sat on a white plastic chair. Mazza asked me to sit on the floor. The man introdueced himself to me as Benjamin Yeaten. he said he was the director of security, that i should not fear and that i should explain exactly who i was. I started explaining. Mazza turned towards me and asked that i take out my particulars that he had seen with me. I gave them to Yeaten. They started discussing in their language, later Mazza told me it was a Gio language. When i showed him my name, he thought that i was a Madingo but i told him i was not.
Pros: Who was this Benjamin?
Wit: According to the way he introduced himself to me, he was the director of security. he gave me his name and asked me for my name. When i gave him my name, he thought i was a Madingo. I toild him i was a Sirerra Leonean and it was a mere conicidence.
Pros: Director of Security for what?
Wit: the SSS, security to Taylor
Pros; Did you learn what that place was, where they took you?
Wit: yes, that was his house. What i was made to understand, my arrest coincided with some incident at the Guinea border. they had just arrested some ammunition from some Guineans. So he thought i was Madingo and wanted to link me up with the ammunitions they had captured. I said i was innocent.
Prso: How did you learn about the incident at the Guinean border?
Wit: the man himself explained to me. He said they understood that the Madongos wanted to attack them. I told him my name was from Sierra Leoen.
Pros: So what happened?
Wit: After the conversation with Benjamin, some other people came around because they were discussing this on the Radio handset. That made some other people move to come to the place. One of the people was the Police Director, Joe Teye. Another slim tall man came and Mazza told me he was the deputy SSS director who was called Vamunya Sheriff. he also spoke to me but i told him i was a Sierra Leonean and i had no business with Madingo people.
Pros: Did anyone else come to the house?
Wit: Yes, many other men came. Some, i cannot recall their names. Some, i did not even know their names. Some will just look at me and turn their faces.
Pros: Did Sheriff talk to you?
Wit: Yes, he asked me questions just like i have told the court. They looked at my documents as well.
Pros: Was there any discussion about where you were living at that time?
Wit: yes, i told Benjamin that i was living with Matilda. They were talking on the VHS set and i heard them mention Matilda’s name. She came later and met me. She came with a guy who was her brother who too was an SSS and he was in the Liberian university. They spoke and that reduced the pressure.
Pros: What happened then?
Wit: From there, Benjamin told Zigzag that i should be in his custody until further notice. There was a boys quarter there. The house is a storied building. The boys quarter had two rooms, but one of them was a guard room. I was locked in there.
Pros: How long did you stay locked in that room?
Wit: I was there for two days, but in the morning , Mazza will come and take me out. I told him i want to take shower and change my wears. He took me to Matilda’s place. We walked to Taylor’s house and you will see late Tubman’s house where you will access a road to Matilda’s house. We met Matilda getting ready to leave for work. Mazza went ahead and saluted Matilda, who was using a green car. They spoke to each other. Mazza gave me some amount, i took my shower, changed my clothes and he took me back to Benjamin’s place.
Pros: What did you mean by Mazza gave me some amount?
Wit: No it was Matilda who gave us $100(US) for my use. She handed the money to Mazza. So we went back to Benjamin’s house.
Pros: What happened when you returned?
Wit: yes, like i had said, all of my documents were left with Benjamin. When we returned there. Mazza told me that when he saw me with those men, he asked whom among them that i knew. I told him that i know Dennis Mingo, Issa Sesay, Mosquito and when they went to Freetown, they all knew me. So in Benjamin’s house, there is a small room that was used for Rdaio communication and there is a verandah just by it. There was a communications man there who was called Mr. Selay. He was RUF. Mazza took the radio and started communicating and according to what i heard, he was talking with Bockarie in Buedu. I heard when he was speaking, after saying some words, he will press some buttons and Bockarie will reply. The discussion focused on me. he told me that some oy my SLA men, like Cobra, etc were all in Buedu. he said they had all confirmed that i was not a bad person. He said this was just a misunderstanding. he said that Maaza should hold on until he arrived from Buedu. From there, we came back outside.
Pros: How did you know it was Sam Boickarie that he was talkiing to?
Wit: Maaza told me. He treated me fairly. he told me he was trying to get Bockarie so that they will talk. they used to call Bockaris Master.
Pros: After this, what happened?
Wit: We came out and they were eating. Benjamin and some other men were playing drought before coming to the table to eat. Mazza asked me to join them to eat. I wanted to ease myself so i went to the back of the house. I saw amputated human arms been dried on fire. Mazza told me it was turtle. I didnt want him to know i was against what they were eating so i told him i was ok. they ate and benjamin went inside. I was seated with the other people. Mazza also went in and called me. He said Benjamin wanted to talk to him. He said you have said you are an artillary officer and that our men had captured two APC tanks and a 40 barrel gun. And since i had told them that we had a division in the army that was trainied in artillary personel, he said they believe that i will be very much useful in that light.
Pros: The witness said i saw an amputated human arm. What did you see when you went to ease yourself?
Wit: I said i saw a dryer, used to dry fish, then i saw amputated arms on the dryer. So when they invited me to eat the food, i said i am ok.
Pros; Did you see just one hand or more than that?
Wit: I saw some other parts that i couldnt identify but when i saw the hands, i knew they were not animal hands. I said they were human parts.
Pros: Who told you it was turtle?
Wit: It was Mazaa and some other SSS at the front gate.
Pros: Who were eating together?
Wit:Mazaa, and some other security personel. It was when they were eating that Benjamin got up and went inside.
Pros: Did Bejnamin join the others to eat?
Wit: He was a big man. he did not join the others to eat.
Pros: So what happened?
Wit: Bockarie came the following day at around 2am.
Pros: Was there any other attempt to see if people knew you other than Matilda?
Wit: Oh yes, i can recall and that was the day i told you that Bockarie came at 2am. On his arrival, Mazza called me to go with him. He came with his bodyguards, one called Major Foday, Victor Kemoh. He was at a distance when Mazza asked me that among the men, i should identify Bickarie. Immediately after his question, i was able to point at Bockarie. I went close to him and in response, Bockarie said he had seen me in Freetown but was not used to me. he was able to identify me and i was able to identify him.
Pros: Where was it that you saw Bockarie?
Wit: At yeaten’s house
Pros: Did he come in vehicle?
Wit: he came with three trucks that were captured from ECOMOG and a black Land Cruiser.
Pros: What happened when you identified Bockarie?
Wit: There was a plastic table at the center of the verandah, and Bockarie, Yeaten and Mazza sat in chairs round the table. they brought a chair for me and i sat down. Saleh, the Lebanese business man came together with two other arab nationals that i didnt know.
Pros: I see that the time is almost out.
Judge: yes, we will therefore adjourn for lunch and resume at 2:30pm.
Court is adjourned for lunch.