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Litigants urged to adopt the Alternate Dispute Resolution

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lawyersLitigants in the country have been urged to study more about the “Court Connected Alternate Dispute Resolution (CCADR)” to inform their choice on dispute adjudications.

“Where it is possible, litigation should be discouraged and mediation encouraged and this is the option that the CCADR provides,” said Mr Alex Nartey, National Coordinator of the CCADR, on Monday during the opening ceremony of the “CCADR Week” in Tema.

He said there were still many cases being handled in regular courts that dragged on for years while they could easily be resolved at the CCADR within a shorter period and at much lesser cost.

Mr Nartey said “Ghana is presently welcoming foreign investors and such prospective investors would like to know if a country has a CCADR system.”

For in case of a business agreement dispute, he said, this system could potentially offer a quicker solution and save the litigants from a lengthy and expensive court process.

Mr Nartey urged legal practitioners to advise their clients who might do better in the CCADR process with their cases to opt for that option saying “your clients would appreciate you better for not prolonging their cases and would recommend you to others for your efficiency “.

The CCADR Coordinator also appealed to the media to help promote the concept in order to improve the country’s justice delivery system.

His Worship Malcolm Bedzrah, District Magistrate of the White House District Court-Tema, who chaired the function, said it was most unfortunate that sometimes cases that could be amicably resolved often ended with people becoming enemies.

He assured the public of the effectiveness of the system saying “the CCADR prevents avoidable litigation and creates bonds of friendship rather than enmity.”

In recognition of the need for a mechanism that would complement the regular court system for a faster and more efficient resolution of cases pending in the courts, the Chief Justice, in 2001, set up a task force, with the objective of determining an appropriate and customized policy direction that incorporates Alternate Dispute Resolution in the court adjudication process.

Based on recommendations of the task force, the Chief Justice issued a policy directive, adopting and incorporating the CCADR as a core component of the justice delivery system in Ghana, as an option to parties whose cases were pending in the courts.

A week in each Legal Year Term is set aside to observe CCADR.  During the week, the public is educated on the use of CCADR and parties who have cases pending in courts that are connected to the CCADR program are given the opportunity to have their cases settled through mediation.

Source: GNA

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