An Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) practitioner and Programs Director at the Institute of Paralegal Training and Leadership Studies (IPLS), Isaac Asare has appealed to Chiefs and Traditional rulers to include mediation techniques when settling cases that come before them.
Mr. Asare said though Chiefs employ the ADR method of arbitration, which is acceptable by law, it would be more helpful for them to adopt mediation in resolving issues to promote friendliness between feuding parties.
He was explaining the benefits of ADR on UTV’s late news as part of the implementation of the Case Tracking System (CTS) under the USAID-funded Justice Sector Support Activity (JSSA).
Mr. Asare was of the view that the arbitration method used by traditional rulers makes impositions on disputing parties and therefore friendliness between the parties is at risk.
“The Chiefs use Customary Arbitration in settling cases that appear before them which is competently accepted just like going to court but what we would appeal is that they should also employ Mediation when resolving issues. This is because, with the arbitration method, Chiefs declare a winner and imposes sanctions on the loser which can mar the relationship of the two,” he said.
The ADR expert urged disputing parties to accept courts proposals made to them to opt for ADR because it is for their own interest.
“Some individuals see it as disappointing when they go to court and they are referred to use ADR. I will rather encourage them to accept the offer because it is in their interest not the judge’s,” he entreated.
Speaking on the Case Tracking System (CTS), the Rule of Law Specialist on the JSSA, Enoch Jengre urged Justice Sector Institutions to make effective use of the system to help hasten the processes in justice delivery whiles removing bottlenecks in serving justice timeously.
“You normally hear of missing dockets and this delays justice delivery. Now that we have the CTS, a technology to help us track cases from inception till trial in court, we have to take advantage of it to do away with papers in the system. We must make good use of it to deliver justice effectively,” he encouraged.
About the USAID JSS Activity
The Activity focuses on monitoring and sustaining the implementation of Ghana`s Case Tracking System (CTS) which is being implemented in forty (40) target Districts in seven (7) Regions of Ghana. It aims at increasing citizen knowledge and access to Justice Sector services, strengthening advocacy interventions for accountability of key Justice Sector Institutions to improve justice delivery, and increasing citizens’ oversight and monitoring of criminal cases.