The Judiciary has set up a Court Annexed Mediation(CAM) Registry in the Kisumu Law Court to handle mediation cases.
Speaking when she officially launched the CAM registry, the Principal Judge, Lady Justice Lydia Achode said that Mediation was one of the mechanisms the Judiciary had adapted to clear case backlog.
The mediation project which has been operation in the Family and Commercial Division in Nairobi since May 2016 is now being rolled out to ten Counties where modalities have already been set up to establish CAM in the regional courts.
During this roll-out period a team tasked to implement mediation in the Judiciary is currently engaged in a public sensitization campaign. So far the team hasengaged various professional bodies such as the Law Society of Kenya members of Court Users Committee, County leadership, community leaders and mediators among others.
The mediation which has been in operation at the Milimani Law Courts has managed to successfully resolve about 400 cases with an estimate of KS. 3 billion which has been released back to the economy.
Justice Fred Ochieng who chairs the CAM Taskforcenoted that the World Bank Ease of Doing Business Report had ranked Kenya No. 61 from No. 136 in the last two years. The World Bank Report assesses various factors including how a country enforcescontracts and resolve insolvency cases
“The high rating is greatly attributed to the Judiciary mediation program which has seen cases especially in the commercial court been resolved at a record of 60 days” said Judge Ochieng.
Also speaking during the launch, JSC Commissioner, Justice Aggrey Muchelule pointed out the Judiciary the CAM was guided by the Constitution of Kenya, 2010 which endorses Alternative Dispute Resolution as a legal alternative to court litigation.
Some of the mediation benefits include; assisting in reduction of case backlog, ensure speedy resolution of disputes, restore pre-dispute relationships among others
Court Annexed Mediation which is dubbed “A solution for you by you” is an initiative by the Judiciary which allows parties to come up with their own solutions with the help of a mediator accredited by the Judiciary. Once an agreement is reached, it is stamped as a court document.
So far the Judiciary has accredited over 300 mediators whom the disputing parties can chose from. The accreditation of mediators is still open for potential applicants and the forms and rules of accreditation can be found in the Judiciary website.
The other Counties where CAM has been established are Nyeri, Kakamega and Kisii. The roll out plan also includes Mombasa, Eldoret, Machakos, Garissa, Nakuru and Embu.