The Judiciary to support Alternative Dispute Resolution Mechanism.
The Judiciary is committed to supporting activities geared operationalizing Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) mechanisms in the judicial system.
Speaking during the opening of a two-day National ADR Stakeholder Forum, Deputy Chief Justice Philomena Mwilu noted that ADR is crucial to enhancing access to justice adding that the Judiciary is undertaking various initiatives aimed at enhancing access to justice through the mechanism.
Justice Mwilu said the relative speed and efficiency with which commercial disputes are resolved, as a result of an effective court and alternative dispute resolution system, will enhance Kenya’s reputation as an economic hub and a centre for business interests both regional and global.
She identified expeditious resolution of commercial disputes, confidentiality, flexibility with regard to solutions, allowing for choice and autonomy of disputing parties, and the minimal costs compared to litigation as some of advantages of ADR.
She called for support of Alternative Dispute Resolution and Alternative Justice Systems across our justice system saying that this will have a direct impact on quality of justice within all sectors of the system, as well as the speed and efficiency with which justice is accessed by people and businesses.
She said that training and sensitisation of judicial officers on alternative dispute resolution matters is also at the centre of the institution’s strategic blueprint for Sustaining Judiciary Transformation.
The Judiciary has so far has entrenched the Court Annexed Mediation and the Alternative Justice Systems.
Cabinet Secretary for Ministry of Industry, Trade and Cooperatives, Adan Mohammed noted that ADR mechanisms play a critical role in strengthening Kenya’s economic, trade and investment climate.
The forum is organized by the Judiciary through the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Taskforce and the Nairobi Centre for International Arbitration (NCIA)
Both the Judiciary and NCIA are in the midst of carrying out a baseline assessment and analysis with the aim of developing harmonized legal and policy frameworks to deepen the use of ADR in Kenya.
Intended outcomes of the event include: clarity on the policy roadmap for ADR in Kenya, establishment of an ADR coordination mechanism to ensure greater alignment of synergies across sectors and institutions, and increased public awareness on the scope of and opportunities for ADR in Kenya
Present during the conference were representatives from the Parliament, Government Ministries, political actors, legal fraternity, trade unions, academia, civil society and the private sector.