The construction of an Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) centre is currently underway, set up to serve as a crucial connection point between public and private ADR initiatives and service providers. An Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) centre is a facility that provides a neutral and informal setting for parties to resolve their disputes outside of the traditional court system. In an interview with The New Times, Anastase Nabahire, the Director General of the Justice Sector Coordination at the Ministry of Justice, emphasised that the centre’s establishment is aimed at providing people with quality ADR services that are harmonised and coordinated. “This initiative aligns with the significant policy actions outlined in the ADR Policy adopted on September 8, 2022,” Nabahire said. ALSO READ: Over 4,000 cases resolved through mediation in five years Addressing some of the centre’s objectives, Nabahire underscored its potential to enable stakeholders in the fields of Justice, reconciliation, law, and other sectors to better organise themselves in terms of conducting ADR research, documentation, capacity-building, monitoring and evaluation, and service provision. Furthermore, Nabahire clarified the centre’s role in complementing existing dispute resolution mechanisms in the country, emphasising that it is not designed to replace current dispute resolution organs. Rather, it aims to harmonise existing ADR initiatives, both formal and informal, facilitating mutual learning, sharing of best practices, and collaborative problem-solving. ALSO READ: Gov’t set to implement alternative dispute resolution policies Nabahire stressed the importance of peer-to-peer learning and leveraging culturally-based ADR solutions to elevate Rwanda’s peaceful problem-solving practices to new heights. Highlighting one of the centre’s missions, Nabahire underlined its commitment to promoting and supporting ADR while extracting valuable lessons to guide future generations. He noted that criminal matters might also be subject to negotiation based on relevant laws. ALSO READ: Legal experts talk alternative dispute resolution and criminal justice policies Nabahire reiterated the government’s commitment to enhancing coordination among existing initiatives following the principles and guidelines of the ADR Policy. In terms of ensuring the quality and fairness of ADR proceedings, Nabahire explained that the mutual choice of a neutral party by the involved parties already ensures fairness. However, he assured that the ministry would establish mechanisms for follow-up and control to uphold standards. Regarding the timeline for the centre’s operations to commence, Nabahire acknowledged that much work remains, but expressed confidence about the centre’s rapid growth.