The Chief Justice of Nigeria (CJN), Walter Onnoghen, has said the adoption of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is now the mechanism for justice dispensation and decongesting courts’ caseloads in the country.
Speaking during the commissioning of the Court of Appeal Mediation Centre in Abuja, Justice Onnoghen adviced the management of the centre to ensure that they developed robust and impartial system in the selection process for professionals with the highest ethics and global best practices.
The CJN, who was represented by Justice Olukayode Ariwoola of the Supreme Court, adviced judges to encourage ADR mechanisms in cases that were less contentious before them as it would help in decongesting their courts’ huge caseload.
In her address, President of the Court of Appeal (PCA), Justice Zainab Bulkachuwa, expressed concern over the huge number of cases that got to the appellate court, adding that the court was now facing the need to equip itself due to growing international trade and investment and family disputes.
“Unlike litigation through which huge money is lost in the process of resolving disputes, mediation is less expensive, time-saving and flexible. It has been shown to promote healthy and mutual co-existence and to relieve pressure on the courts,” she said.