1. Workshop on “Effective Case Management Processes for Arbitration Institutions in Africa”, Abuja, Nigeria
Within the context of exchanging management skills with other arbitral institutions, CRCICA was represented by Mr. Khaled Osman, Associate Director and Head of the Case Management Department at the workshop on “Effective Case Management Processes for Arbitration Institutions in Africa” held on 23rd October 2017, Abuja, Nigeria. The workshop was attended by case managers from International Centre for Arbitration & Mediation Abuja ( ICAMA), London Court of International Arbitration / Mauritius International Arbitration Centre (LCIA/MIAC), Ghana Arbitration Centre (GAC), and Kigali International Arbitration Center (KIAC). The workshop was organized to simulate the tasks performed by the Case Management from the filing of the arbitration request till the delivery of the award. Each attendee led one session of the workshop which was generally moderated by Dr. Emilia Onyema, Senior Lecturer at the School of African and Oriental Studies, London. Mr. Osman led the third session on “Appointment of Arbitrators” wherein issues related to the use of the list procedure, compilation of lists, and direct appointments were discussed from the perspective of each centre’s practices. The session concluded that case managers can have a vital role in perfecting the appointment of arbitrators process through the effective compilation of the final lists from which appointments may be made, depending on the choice of parties involved.
2. The Second Biennial African Arbitration Roundtable, Abuja, Nigeria
In support of CRCICA’s diversification plan with specific focus on Africa, as one strong whole in the heart of the universe, Dr. Selim spoke at the Second Biennial African Arbitration Roundtable organized by the International Centre for Arbitration and Mediation of Abuja (ICAMA) on 24 October 2017, Abuja, Nigeria.The theme of the conference was “Growing and Sustaining Arbitration and ADR in Africa”. Welcome address were delivered by Chief Bayo Ojo, SAN CON, the chairman of ICAMA. Dr. Selim delivered a speech on: African States and Governments: To use or not to use ADR. The presentation urged African states to provide adequate legal framework for arbitration and ADR, to attract international trade and foreign investments and to respect the rule of law. Furthermore, Dr. Selim outlined the need for cooperation between African and Asian arbitral institutions to allow best practice of arbitration, enhance transparency and due process. Dr. Selim has also mentioned AALCO’s visionary ‘scheme’ for administering international arbitration through establishing notable arbitration centres in Asia and Africa and which was enshrined in the AALCO’s “Exchanged Letters” with the Egyptian Government and which had led to the establishment of the CRCICA in 1979.
Interesting questions and answers followed the speech and Dr. Selim has accepted an invitation to draft an article on the said Exchanged Letters in ICCA’s Historic Documents column that features in ICCA’s twice-yearly hard copy Newsletter. The article will appear in July 2018.
3. Third African Consultative Workshops Meeting in Abuja- 25 October 2017.
Building on the First and Second Consultative Workshops on Cooperation among African Arbitral Initiatives supported by ICCA and held in Mauritius on 11 May 2016 and Cairo on 3 April 2017 the organizing committee hosted a Third Consultative Workshop in Abuja on 25 October 2017 which was attended by Dr. Ismail Selim, the Director of the CRCICA and many other African arbitration practitioners featuring in the above photo.
The First Consultative Workshop laid a foundation for stronger collaboration among arbitration institutions and practitioners by reviewing the state of arbitration initiatives in Africa. This overview shed light on the potential of arbitration in Africa, and exposed various areas in which future cooperation would be valuable.
The First Consultative Workshop adopted a set of Resolutions, identifying the following areas for future work:
– the need for an umbrella organization to promote cooperation of arbitration initiatives in Africa;
– the provision of greater access to information on arbitration in Africa;
– the need for capacity-building activities on arbitration; and
– the provision of technical assistance to governments;
The Second Consultative Workshop held at the CRCICA premises aimed to concretize the goals expressed in the Resolutions, providing an opportunity for discussion on cooperation in education and training, creation of online resources on African arbitral practice and provision of technical assistance. (See CRCICA Newsletter 2017-2.)
The Third Consultative Workshop held in Abuja and hosted by Chief Bayo Ojo focused on concrete discussion of the structure of an umbrella organization to support arbitration in Africa, the provision of a revised draft of the Constitution of the future umbrella organization reflecting the changes discussed, membership of the organization, and the umbrella organization’s website presence. The next meeting has been diarised on 2 May 2018 in Kigali with the aim of launching the body formally on that date and elect its first office-holders.
4. LCIA African Users’ Council Symposium, Abuja, Nigeria
At the LCIA African Users’ Council Symposium held on 26-27 October 2017, Abuja, Dr. Selim participated at a panel discussion titled: Proliferation of Arbitration Centres in Africa – A Gift or a Curse? which focused on the important areas of international arbitration, critical to establishing and maintaining an arbitration-friendly environment, in which the international business community may have confidence. Following the presentations, participants were encouraged to participate in a free-flowing discussion of the issues raised.