Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mbete Mwilu on June 21, 2022, officially opened the 1st Annual Alternative Justice Systems (AJS) Conference.
The DCJ noted that it was necessary for the Judiciary to be cognisant of the fact that most disputes are not resolved through the formal justice system.
“Always cognisant of the fact that most disputes are not resolved through formal justice system, Judiciary must learn from these ‘alternative’ systems and techniques that make the justice they dispense more organic and permeating.” said DCJ Mwilu
Justice Mwilu said the role of AJS in accelerating Social Transformation Through Access to Justice” is a most opportune theme reflecting priority of place CJ & Judiciary give to expanding doorways of justice by promoting a multi-door approach in access to justice.
She added that the promotion of AJS is not a ‘positing’ by the Judiciary, it is the enabling of a structured national conversation on justice in accordance with the purpose and principles of the Constitution and for the benefit of the communities of Kenya.
“The Constitution of Kenya 2010, the Judiciary AJS Policy, and the Social Transformation Through Access to Justice (STAJ) strategic blueprint all require a paradigmatic shift in our conception of justice and justice provision.” said the DCJ .
Justice prof Joel Ngugi, who is the Chair of the National Steering Committee for the Implementation of AJS, said that there comes a point when we must stop coming up with new strategies for reducing backlog of 21% of all disputes. We must go upstream and ensure only the right cases come to court. This is the palliative role of AJS. Preventive justice.