Lansana Gberie


Once again, the source of an African conflict can be traced back to unsustainable demarcations of territories arbitrarily drawn by colonial powers and the resulting civil war, argues Lansana Gberie in this week's Pambazuka News. Drawing on interviews as well as personal experience of the Guinea–Sierra Leone border dispute, Gberie focuses on issues such as how the discovery of diamonds escalated the border conflict and proposes a set of steps needed – mainly through the involvement of ECOWAS ( more


As Liberia's Truth and Reconciliation Commission (TRC) moves to address the country's troubled past, Lansana Gberie is entirely confused by the commission's direction and intent. With some US$8 million plus spent on the TRC over a two-year period, considerably more would have been expected from the commission's report than mere woolly, dull assertions. The report's dismissal of the views informing its findings undermines its relevance, Gberie argues, and is only saved from complete more

cc Returning to DRC for the first time since 1996, Lansana Gberie finds that a little cash comes in handy for dealing with bureaucracy and that it is impossible to get anything done without a ‘fixer’. Considering the conflicts in the country’s history, Gberie notes that in Congo ‘money is always at the centre of the bigger drama of suffering’ and that justice – or the more Gberie reviews two books on child soldiers: Allah is Not Obliged by Ahmadou Kourama and Ishmael Beah’s A Long Way Gone: Memoirs of a Boy Soldier, which is now being sold in Starbucks coffee shops across America.

The most difficult ones to deal with, the earnest UN official told me, are the 'teenage more

The Disarmament, Demobilisation and Reintegration programme started in Sierra Leone in 1998. Among others, its objectives were to collect, register, disable and destroy all conventional weapons and munitions retrieved from combatants. But Lansana Gberie argues that DDR processes are “expensive, time-consuming, and often irritating. It challenges one’s sensibilities, for example, to come to terms with the idea that fighters who have been guilty of gross atrocities will be compensated and more

Dramatic atrocities, extreme human suffering and the cruelties and psychosis of dirt poverty and slum life make for memorable documentaries, and the Sierra Leone civil war (1991-2002) combined all of these in excess. Man Den Nor Glady'O, a 57-minute documentary produced by charmingly named Rice N Peas, an alternative London-based production company, is the latest to relentlessly focus on these vulgar aspects of the country's recent and current condition.