9:30am: Court resumed in open session and prosecution counsel Ms. Brenda Hollis continued and completed the examination of Witness TF1-189. Defense counsel Terry Munyard commenced cross-examination of the witness.
During examination-in-chief, prosecution counsel asked the witness several questions relating to her experiences in the hands of the RUF rebels, her knowledge of certain events that took place, her relocation to Kono, and her subsequent movement to Makeni.
Witness’s experiences in Kailahun
The witness testified that she was based in Kailahun town until September 1998. She said that as a result of ECOMOG jet raids, she left kailahun town and was moved, together with other people to another location. While at that location, the witness and other captives were used to do domestic chores. The witness was later moved to other different locations. She stated that she once accompanied a female rebel to Buedu where she met with Sam Bockarie. Bockarie, she said was addressed as the overall commander of the RUF.
The witness testified about 20 people being taken to a training base in Kailahun. She said the training officer there was CO. Monica. Describing CO. Monica, she said that she was a wicked commander who was harsh with trainees. After the training, the witness said that the trainees were sent to the front line.
Witness Leaves Kailahun after the Signing of the Lome Peace Accord
In July of 1999, the witness said that she was moved from her location when the Lome Peace Agreement was signed by the RUF and the Sierra Leone Government. She said they were all moved to kailahun town, and then to Koidu on foot. After a month, the witness said they were moved to Makeni, where they were addressed in a meeting by RUF commanders. Among the commanders present at the meeting were CO. Monica, Morris Kallon, Tamba Brima, Eldred Collins, etc. She said the commanders told them that they had signed a peace agreement and that the war was over. They promised to set them free within a short time. In less than one month, the witness said they were set free and she left Makeni.
Prosecution counsel made an application that the court be moved into private session in order to establish her particulars and the basis of her knowledge of certain events she testified about.
Court went into private session.
Cross-Examination of Witness TF1-189.
Defense counsel Terry Munyard commenced the cross-examination of the witness in open session. After a few questions, court went into closed session in order to protect the witness’s identity.
Defense counsel Mr. Munyard focussed his cross-eaxmination on inconsistencies in her written statement and her oral testimony in court.
Defense counsel asked the witness about her oral testimony that she was raped by RUF rebels in the living room of a house where they had run into hiding when the rebels entered Kono. Defense counsel referenced her written statement when she said to prosecution investigators that she was raped in a bush. Defense counsel asked the witness whether it is possible that her ordeal in the hands of the rebels might have affected her recollection of events. The witness agreed with counsel. Justice Sebuntinde sought to clarify with the witness when she was saying that she has an unreliable memory. The witness responded that she did not understand the question and thought counsel was refering to the time she made her statement to investigators. She said that she has a reliable memory.
Court adjourned for mid-morning break.