The Outreach Section of the Special Court for Sierra Leone (SCSL) in their drive to disseminate information to the public and also find out how successful the work of the Court has been, yesterday launched a public perception report on the Court, at the British Council.
Talking about the steps in producing the report, the independent expert Dr. Edmond Nonie said that the project started last year when the concept was discussed.
Dr Nonie revealed that leaders of the various Civil Society Movements took active part in the deliberations because they were responsible for sensitizing the people and also recruiting members of the community as enumerators.
A total of 200 enumerators were trained for a period of 2 days in each town including Bo, Makeni and Kenema adding that a total of ten thousand (10, 0000) questionnaires were administered throughout the country.
After the report was complied the various people and organization contributed to what was written in report.
The Independent Expert added that even though the report is being launched late but there is an adage which states that it is better late than never and the report has met the benchmark of the Sierra Leone populace and also they have reached the standard of the international community.
In his statement, the Acting Registrar of the Special Court Herman Von Hebel disclosed that the outreach section has been a crucial part of the court, stating that the judges can do their work, and the indictees will be in the center but this work cannot be accomplished without the dissemination of this information.
Mr Von Hebel affirmed that the important element in the dialogue with the civil society and the citizens is the outreach as they bring the court and the people closer.
In launching the report the Assistant Inspector General in Charge of Crime Kadie Fakonda said that the police had been working with the Special Court whom they have been receiving training from.
She stressed that when the Special Court first started its operations in the country people were full of anxiety as people wanted to know about the trial.
AIG Fakonda averred that though the court was doing their work by broadcasting the trials yet they did not rely on it and so decided to do an external survey.
She added that one of the challenges explained in the report is the question asked on the elections and the court.
To this the AIG said that this is clear that the people understand that the Special Court is independent and that they will not interfere with the daily politics of the country.