The mandate of Seychelles’ Truth, Reconciliation and National Unity Commission (TRNUC) has been extended to the end of December to allow it to complete its work and present a final report.
The chairperson of TRNUC, Gabrielle McIntyre, requested an extension in August when she presented an interim report to the President of Seychelles, Wavel Ramkalawan.
The extension of the TRNUC mandate was approved by the National Assembly on Wednesday with 23 members of the ruling Linyon Demoktratik Seselwa (LDS) party voting in favour and all 10 members of the United Seychelles opposition party voting against.
TRNUC was established in 2018 to work on settling past political divisions and grievances that were a result of the coup d’état in Seychelles on June 5, 1977. It had a three-year mandate which was expected to end in August 2022.
In his summing up after the vote on the TRNUC Amendment Bill 2022, Vice President Ahmed Afif answered the question whether four months will be enough for TRNUC to complete its work.
“What I have been told by the Commission is that they will complete their work. Nothing is guaranteed but they have their resources and everything that is needed and they have confirmed that they will complete their work by December,” said Afif.
He added that no additional funding will be needed because “when their budget was approved last year, the government had already made provision that if ever the work was not completed in August, they had a full year budget of around 16 million rupees.”
In its interim report of August 9, 2022, the commission said it had filed 126 out of its 373 case determinations. To date, it has completed 256 which means there are 117 to complete by the end of the year.
McIntyre told SNA that “this is an extremely heavy work load given that many of the cases are extremely complicated, allege numerous human rights violations, require extensive investigative efforts and more often than not involve the perusal of numerous files and documents.”
She added that “once the remaining case determinations are submitted the Volumes filed will have the status of the Final Report and pursuant to the TRNUC Act.”
McIntyre said that once the President has the final report, he has the authority to make the report public and is required to lay a copy before the National Assembly within one month of receiving it.
Meanwhile all those working with the commission have had their three-year contracts extended in order to carry out the work.