Press Release - 22 November 2001

300 Nominations for Commissioners Received by Selection Panel

The Selection Panel of the Commission for Reception, Truth and Reconciliation last week completed the process of consultations with the East Timorese public on nominations for National and Regional Commissioners.  

As part of this wide consultation process, the Selection Panel conducted visits to all 13 districts in East Timor.  During these visits, the Panel informed the public about the Commission, explained in detail the nomination process for Commissioners, and received recommendations from a wide range of sectors within the community including traditional leaders, the Church, NGOs, women’s groups and victim support groups. 

“The sheer number of nominations that we have received from the public – more than 300 in total - shows us that communities are fully supportive of the process, and will be engaged at every level to take the process of truth-seeking and reconciliation forward”, states Francisco Amaral, Secretary for the Selection Panel. 

The Panel also conducted consultations in West Timor, with meetings in Kupang, Kefamenanu and Atambua organized by local NGO and Church groups working directly with refugee communities in W. Timor.  Following additional meetings with pro-autonomy leaders, the Panel has received nominations for Commissioners from pro-autonomy groups. 

“Those we spoke to in West Timor applauded the idea of the Commission, especially as it will be looking at human rights violations from 1974 – 1999, in an independent manner”, reports Amaral. 


What are the Next Steps?

The Selection Panel has received 95 nominations for National Commissioners and 219 nominations for Regional Commissioners, from both formal organizations and community groups.   They are now in the process of drawing up a shortlist for the National Commissioners, and will conduct interviews.  They will make recommendations for the appointment of 5 – 7 National Commissioners to the Transitional Administrator in early December.

The Selection Panel may also decide to make additional nominations itself, and in that case would consult further with communities about those nominations.  Regional Commissioners will be selected by the National Commissioners once they are in place.

The process of nomination and selection of Commissioners, through proper consultation with communities in East Timor, is one of the most vital steps towards establishing a fully functioning Commission that will be able to serve the interests of the East Timorese people.


For further enquiries to the Selection Panel, please contact Francisco Amaral:  0409 009 293.

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