Will new reparations body in Ivory Coast fulfill promise?
Wounds, physical and psychological, heal slowly for many victims of the 2011 post-election crisis in Ivory Coast that killed over 3,000 residents and ended with former President Laurent Gbagbo’s ouster by Alassane Ouattara.
Reconciliation, some say, is just a buzzword in a country still largely divided along political lines. And for thousands of residents who sustained physical injuries, life will never be the same.
Recently, the Ivorian government has invested in what it sees as a practical solution: a national commission for victims’ reconciliation and compensation. Known as the CONARIV, the newest initiative to remunerate victims was announced in March by Ouattara.
To administer compensations, the CONARIV has appointed the government’s national programme for social cohesion, or PNCS.
“From now, we have three months to obtain a consensual and consolidated list of victims which will be validated by the president of the republic,” the PNCS president, Mariatou Koné, told Agence Africaine de Presse in April. She urged state- and civil-level parties to participate in the process. “We need the involvement of everyone.”
Small shoes to fill