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Lawyers Fault Bill On Alternative Dispute Resolution

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THE African Bar Association (AFBA) has faulted the bill seeking to establish a commission on Alternative Dispute Resolution in Nigeria, describing it as a limitation for practitioners from other jurisdiction.

The Senate, last month, had held a public hearing for a bill on the establishment of a National Alternative Dispute Resolution Regulatory Commission.

According to a statement issued by the Deputy General Secretary of the Association, Mrs. Obele Akinniranye, “AFBA is not in support of any legislation that serves to defeat its fundamental objective of enhancing the degree of integration among African states and reducing government interference in established policies and regulations that aid cross border practice of arbitral processes.”

Akinniranye noted that the position of the bill flows against the intentions of the founding objectives of African Union (AU).

“The AU directive principle includes the encouragement of member’s states to promote legislation that consolidates the gains from increased integration of member African states through uniform and progressive regulations.

“AFBA objects to the bill due to the negative examples for other African States who may also effect similar negative legislation, as it also limits non-Nigerian ADR practitioners from practicing in Nigeria because of stringent entry level requirements.”

She noted that the bill objects to the treaty obligation of the AU to which Nigeria is a signatory, including the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL), Alco and the 1958 New York Convention on the Recognition and Enforcement of Foreign Arbitral Awards.



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