President of the Institute of Chartered Mediators and Conciliators (ICMC), Dr. Louis Brown Ogbeifun, has emphasized the place of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), in our judicial system and the need for enlightenment for Nigerian to imbibe mediation mechanism as alternative dispute resolution.
He stated that all over the world, courts of law are overloaded and overburdened and this is invariably responsible to the usual considerable delay in the resolution of disputes submitted to them.
He recommended that mediation can also be used to settle disputes before and after elections, stating that court procedure is very formal, technical and inflexible and this has greatly reduced the ability of litigants to participate directly in the resolution of their grievances.
“The present legal practice of litigation leaves parties exhausted, embittered and often impoverished”, he said.
Ogbeifun spoke in Lagos during ICMC’s special induction ceremony after its 100th Mediation Skills and Accreditation and Certification Course.
About 50 mediators were inducted, most of them staff of the Lagos State Ministry of Justice.
He said the institute has trained over 10,000 mediators since inception.
Noting that the world of international commerce is moving at a pace that demands the justice system succumbing to change to find relevance in today’s borderless village alternative that will supplement litigation must therefore, be sought as a matter of urgency.
“We have watched the political and socio-economic landscape of Nigeria with dizzying amazement and so much bleeding in our hearts because of increasing deep political divide, increasing gulf between the rich and the poor”, he stated.
Irrespective of this gloomy situation, he said ICMC believe that all hope is not lost because as mediators, there is an emerging greater Nigeria.