Trade disputes worth Sh8.4 billion have been referred for mediation at Nairobi’s Milimani Law Courts in the past month.

Deputy Registrar Elizabeth Tanui said the amount involved 218 civil disputes sent for mediation out of 1,016 recorded at the courts since the Practice Direction on Mediation was gazetted by Chief Justice David Maraga.

Addressing a meeting on reforms meant to ease doing business in Nairobi, Ms Tanui said Kenyans could save millions of shillings if they embraced mediation being offered by courts rather than pursuing litigation that has proved costly and lengthy.

She observed that the mediation team comprising 80 licensed mediators had helped conclude 39 cases within 30 days unlocking cash worth Sh500 million back into the economy.

“Mediation is now a permanent feature in our courts and all civil suits are first brought to my office for screening to determine whether it is a matter that should go into full hearing or for mediation,” she said.

The meeting attended by Trade and Industry secretary Adan Mohamed also heard that online platforms had been set up at various state agencies with a view to reducing human contact blamed for corruption and reducing numerous processes that hurt business.

The Judiciary said starting July 1, an online portal for filing civil cases will go live, initially targeting 20 law firms with the same set for national rollout in due course.

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