Mandingo and Mano Vow to End Land Disputes through Dialogue

GANTA, Nimba – A group of leaders from the Mandingo and Mano tribes recently held a town hall meeting to resolve a series of land issues involving members of both tribes.

The meeting, which was funded by the United States Department of State, saw the Mandingo tribe represented by Sekou Jabateh, while Nyan Taylor Guanue represented the Mano tribe.

Thomas Q. Suah, who served as the County Coordinator of the meeting, informed journalists about the outcome.

He described the meeting as “very successful” and said each group had vowed to withdraw all land cases from the court and have them settled informally.

“This meeting came as a result of a recommendation from the seven men committee set up by the superintendent of this county, Hon. Fong G. Zuagele,” Suah said.

He added that the meeting is a milestone in fostering peace and reconciliation in Nimba County and Liberia as a whole.

“We need to forget about our bitter past and work together for the promotion of peace and reconciliation,” Suah said.

“We know that the 14-year senseless civil crisis in Liberia did not do well for our country and the people,” he said. “At this point in the history of our nation, citizens must say no to issues that would threaten the peace and stability of post-war Liberia.”

The Liberian Civil War did not just take away lives and destroy infrastructure; it also led to disputes among various ethnic groups. In Nimba, the question of who owns land after the civil crisis has created tension from every corner, with Ganta in the spotlight.

In the past, land conflicts in Ganta have drawn the attention of the national government. In 2009, President Ellen Johnson Sirleaf set up a committee to mitigate the land crisis in Nimba, specifically, between the Mano and the Mandingo tribes.

Featured photo by Arrington Ballah

A resident of Ganta, Nimba County, Arrington has a background working with credit unions and other organizations dedicated to rural finance.

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