DELTA State Governor, Senator Dr. Ifeanyi Okowa has called for the use of mediation instead of litigation as the best form of settling disputes to fast track decongestion of Nigerian Prisons.
The Governor made the call in Asaba when the National President of the Institute of Chartered Mediators and Conciliators (ICMC), Chief Emeka Obegolu led his (Chief Obegolu) team to pay him a courtesy visit.
According to the Governor, “if we apply the Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), our prisons will be less congested because, I do know that the process of mediation is faster than litigation, so, we will take most of the cases away from litigation to mediation.”
He commended the ICMC for looking at ways to ensure that ADR is applied in resolving election matters, disclosing, “in Nigeria where people believe that all contestants who lost in an election must go to litigation, we hope that with your training of INEC and DSIEC officials, they will be able to mediate and resolve electioneering disputes faster.”
While calling for enlightenment campaign for Nigerians to know the benefits of ADR as one of the best ways of settling disputes, the Governor reiterated, “it will be the best for our country for ADR to help in election matters.”
“With ADR we will be able to achieve peace and harmonious relationship when we settle disputes among families, friends, relations, contractors and others through mediation rather than litigation,” he observed, adding, “in Delta State, the Multi-Door Court system which we have established will go a long way in dispute resolution and we are hoping to grow it further.”
Chief Obegolu represented at the occasion by Mr. Victor Ojaide who is the Chairman of ICMC, Delta State Chapter commended Delta State government for being among the few states in the country that has Multi-Door Courthouse, stating, ‘there are some conflicts that are not appropriate for litigation and can better be resolved through mediation.”