African countries have a wealth of experience in implementing truth commissions and adapting them to their national contexts, spanning several decades. As noted in the 2019 African Union Transitional Justice Policy, truth commissions are an indicative element of transitional justice. They are “legal bodies established to examine and address violations and abuses. They also serve to establish a full historical record of such violations, including the various experiences of different groups such as women, children and youth, the identity of the victims and perpetrators, as well as the role of various State and non-State institutions, and to provide for measures of reconciliation and healing.”
For each truth commission, when available, this database includes the commission’s mandate, method and year of establishment, period active and final report. It also includes the conflict period as defined in the mandate and the peace agreement that gave rise to the commission. The database was updated in 2023.
Truth and Reconciliation Commission
The Truth and Reconciliation Commission was established in 2003 with the aim of identifying the causes of the Central African Republic’s crises between 1960 and 2003. The work of the TRC was divided into six subcommissions focusing mainly on political, security, economic and social issues.
Inclusive Political Dialogue
The Inclusive Political Dialogue was a two-week dialogue held in Bangui in 2008. The talks focused on themes including politics and governance, security and armed groups, and development in the Central African Republic. They were attended by about 150 participants from government, its allied political parties, opposition parties, rebel movements and civil society, and culminated in a number of recommendations being presented to government.
||Mandate||Final Report||Peace Agreement|
|2008, by presidential order||2003-2008||–||–||–|
National Reconciliation Forum
The National Reconciliation Forum, known as the Bangui Forum, was held on 4-11 May 2015 and attended by more than 600 representatives, including women, participants from different communities, religious backgrounds and ethnicities, as well as the diaspora and refugee populations. The four themes discussed at the forum in plenary debates and working groups were: peace and security; governance; justice and reconciliation; and economic and social development. One of the key recommendations adopted at the Bangui Forum was for national and local mechanisms for justice and reconciliation in the Central African Republic, including the establishment of a national truth and reconciliation commission and local peace and reconciliation committees.
Truth, Justice, Reparation and Reconciliation Commission
The Truth, Justice, Reparation and Reconciliation Commission has been mandated to investigate, establish the truth, and situate responsibilities concerning serious events in the Central African Republic from 1959 to 2019. As stipulated by its founding legislation, the commission will investigate events including the coups in the country; foreign military interventions; use of mercenaries; serious violations of human rights; and political governance. It is to organise thematic hearings on major violations committed and the role played by state or private institutions. The commission’s mandate covers reparations, provides mechanisms for conciliation between victims and perpetrators, and covers matters of forgiveness, envisaging the possible use of traditional and neo-traditional mechanisms for reparation and reconciliation.