The Judiciary has embarked on sensitizing court users and warring factions battling cases in court on the importance of using mediation as an alternative dispute resolution mechanism to help in reducing case backlog.
Court Annexed Mediation (CAM) Deputy Registrar Caroline Kendagor said they will be using nyumba kumi, village elders and trained judiciary-accredited mediators to facilitate communication and negotiation among the parties in dispute to help them to constructively reach an agreeable settlement.
While noting that most of the cases especially civil, can well be solved through mediation, Kendagor said courts have been marred by delays of solving cases which have slowed down the wheels of justice.
“We have seen a serious public outcry over delayed resolution of cases in almost all the courts, possibly due to some petty cases finding themselves in the wheels of justice. To be able to avert such issues, we should be firm in promoting mediation as a way of seeking justice,” she said.
Speaking during a CAM forum held at Gatundu South Sub County, the Deputy Registrar noted that the mediation team will not take the role of judges or judicial officers and called for the support from all stakeholders.
“This will be a cheaper, fast and expeditious justice system compared to the normal judicial process which has been taking forever to resolve,” she added.
Gatundu South MP Gabriel Kagombe and Ng’enda Ward MCA Joe Kigara welcomed the new system insisting that so many people have suffered in the justice corridors over delays and expensive processing of their matters.
Kagombe, who is fighting for his incitement case with the National Cohesion and Integration Commission (NCIC) over remarks he made some months ago alleging that students from a certain region be restrained to school in their home areas, called on the Commission to consider the mediation process.
He said through the new system, much of suspects’ and complainants’ time will be spend on nation-building rather than focusing much on court matters,
Locals too welcomed the system as an easier way that will see them spend less time in court alongside enabling them to speedily reconcile and embrace integral homegrown problem-solving mechanisms.
“We have been spending more time and resources seeking justice and in most cases, it is never forthcoming. However, with the new mediation process, justice will be sought fast and cheaply,” said Patrick Kimani, a resident.
By Muoki Charles