3rd Session: 80th Prosecution Witness TF1-201 Sheku Bah Kuyateh is Called to the Stand

The Hague

October 30, 2008

Places and languages

Defense Counsel Morris Anyah continued his cross-examination and asked the witness about other geographical places. Mansaray was familiar with Kongo and Buedu, both being close to the border but in different parts of the country. Mansaray confirmed that many Sierra Leoneans live on the Liberian side of the border and vice versa. Sometimes they live there for a while and then cross back to their own country. The witness does not know if people speaking Gio also live in Guinea, he only knows about Gio living in Sierra Leone and Liberia. The border sometimes divides families, he himself has siblings living in Liberia. Mende people live in both countries along the border in Sierra Leone and Liberia; Mandingo people live in both countries along the border in Sierra Leone and Guinea.

Recently mentioned names and events

Anyah established that the following matters have only been mentioned for the first time in statements by the witness after he came to The Hague recently and not in any of his previous statements:
– Foday Sankoh coming to Zimmi and giving a speech;
– Charles Taylor on the radio and Sierra Leone tasting the bitterness of war;
– the name of his uncle Gibril Turay;
– diamond mining in Kono in 1998;
– the People’s Army.


Last Tuesday Ibrahim Fofana testified that Staff Alhaji ordered Rambo to amputate him and others. Mansaray said he has never heard of anyone called Rambo and continued to stand by his evidence that both his hands were amputated by Staff Alhaji himself.

The South-Africans

The witness has not heard of the name Executive Outcome. Mansaray heard there were South Africans who were protecting civilians in Kono and that’s why he and his family left Tonkolili District and went to Kono in 1995. The South Africans were armed and indeed protected civilians. The witness has not heard of Kamajors nor does he know if the South Africans were fighting with others as a team, but he used to hear that the government sent them. He did not know if at that time these South Africans were working with the Sierra Leonean Army.

Radio equipment

During the time of his capture while travelling in the third group to Tombodu, while the other two groups were on their way to Kayima and Yarwa, the witness has not seen any of the soldiers or rebels with radio equipment or walkie talkies. He neither saw any radio equipment in Tombodu, so as far as he knows there was no radio communication between the three groups.

There is no re-examination. Presiding Judge Teresa Doherty thanked Mustapha Mansaray for giving his evidence, wished him a safe journey home and dismissed the witness.

80th Prosecution Witness TF1-201

The witness is a category one witness and will testify in open Court without protective measures. The witness is sworn in on the Koran and will testify in Krio. Prosecution Counsel Mohamed Bangura will lead the witness. The name of the witness is Sheku Bah Kuyateh, age 52. He sells fire wood from home. He is married and has five children. He is Mandingo, did not go to school and speaks Mandingo, Krio, Mende, Temne and a little English.

Events of May 25, 1997

At this time in 1997 the witness was employed in security for a mining company. He was in the swamp where diamond mining was going on and heard a radio message that the AFRC had overthrown the government and that Pa Kabbah had run away. The following day AFRC soldiers took over the entire Koidu Town. The soldiers started looting and caused all the companies to shut down, including the company the witness worked for. With the AFRC came the RUF. The RUF had guns but did not wear uniforms, they also looted. Both groups had their different places. The witness and others went to the Secretariat and there was a meeting there. Someone pointed out Mosquito to the witness and the witness recognised SAJ Musa whom he knew from before.

At this moment in the testimony Court is adjourned at 4.30 p.m. until tomorrow 9.30 a.m.