Stakeholders seek sustenance of arbitration practice via mentorship
Experts and other stakeholders in international commercial arbitration have called for greater devotion to independence, impartiality, integrity, as well as mentoring of the next generation to sustain legitimacy of the practice of arbitration in Nigeria.
This was part of a recommendation made at the International Arbitration Conference organised by the Committee on International Commercial Arbitration and Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) of the International Law Association, Nigerian Branch (ILA Nigeria).
The event was held at the Lagos Arbitration Court with the theme ‘Recent Trends and Opportunities in International Commercial Arbitration’, and had in attendance more than 200 participants.
The pioneer and immediate past chairperson of the Committee, Adedoyin Rhodes-Vivour, in her presentation, titled, ‘Recent Trends and Opportunities in International Commercial Arbitration,’ highlighted gaps that needed to be addressed if Nigeria and other African countries would become preferred arbitration seats.
She listed these to include, dismantling barriers such as, undue delays in the arbitration process, financial hurdles, as well as technology and infrastructure challenges that limit virtual hearings.
Rhodes-Vivour also emphasised the progress made in international commercial arbitration, which has increased role for African arbitrators and women in arbitration matters across the world.
However, the new Chairman of the committee, Tolulope Aderemi, who has been involved in several high profile domestic and international energy and construction arbitration matters promised that new executive members would do all within its power to advance the course for improved administration of justice and advocacy for change.
He said: “With the continuing growth of electronic commerce, increase in low volume high value claims, our focus will be to train lawyers to unlearn skills antithetical to the interest of parties and the overall practice or arbitration.
“It is time to work with businesses and move from dispute resolution to conflict avoidance/ management.”
Aderemi commended the former chairperson, Rhodes-Vivour, for her tireless sacrifice and dedication to the development of the ILA.