The German Agency for International Cooperation in Nigeria on Tuesday hosted a webinar for the Chief Judges of selected states and a number of state attorneys general on the development and strengthening of Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR), particularly for commercial disputes.
One of the development measures implemented by the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit – GIZ in Nigeria is the Pro-Poor Growth and Promotion of Employment in Nigeria – SEDIN Programme (including the Nigeria Competitiveness Project – NICOP).
Its objective is to improve the employment and income situation of MSMEs through access to finance and business services, strengthening entrepreneurial and managerial skills, and addressing key barriers in the business and investment climate.
At the webinar, Akinyemi Omoware made a presentation on ‘contract enforcement as key business enabling environment and investment climate issue and the support of SEDIN-NICOP to partner states.’
He said the objective of their programme is the ADR and its integration into the formal justice system on one hand, its institutionalisation in the business sector on the other hand. ADR he said suited commercial disputes more.
Omoware said, “Our support are in the following areas; capacity development for commercial dispute resolution and ADR- mediation and conciliation trainings, orientation workshop on CDR, policy advocacy reform advisory and technical support to the establishment of multi door courthouses, and peer learning visits.
The chief judges who spoke at the webinar on the state of commercial dispute resolution in their state included that of Plateau State, Yakubu Dakwak; Niger State, Ibrahim Muhammad represented by Muhammad Muhammad; Kaduna State, Muhammadu Bello; Edo State, Esohe Ikponmwen and Ogun State, Monilola Dipeolu
The chief judges of partner states for the programme are those Plateau, Niger, Kaduna, Kano, Lagos, Edo, Oyo, Ogun and Abia and the Attorneys-General and Commissioners of Justice of partner states are those of Plateau, Niger, Kaduna, Kano, Lagos, Edo, Oyo, Ogun and Abia.
SEDIN-NICOP explained the objectives of the virtual seminar was to increase awareness of stakeholders on commercial dispute resolution and contract enforcement as a key business enabling environment and investment climate issue and emerging opportunities and initiatives for reforms.
The seminar will also help to provide a platform for engagement, interaction and learning among leading actors in the system of commercial dispute resolution in the SEDIN-NICOP supported states and to explore opportunities for further partnership between the SEDIN-NICOP programme and the states in strengthening the system for commercial dispute resolution and contract enforcement especially for MSMEs.