Pre–Trial Conference As An Effective Tool of Alternative Dispute Resolution Mechanism In Ondo State Judiciary

Adeola Adams



Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) is one of the fastest growing field of academic interests that have attracted researchers from various disciplines. There are myriad ADR processes that have been discovered and more are still being invented as effective tools of conflict management, prevention and settlement in various spheres. Pre-trial conference is one of such inventions. This paper is an assessment of pre-trial conference as part of the recent efforts to institutionalize Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) processes in the Ondo State Judiciary since 2012. The paper sought to identify the factors that led to the adoption of pre-trial conference, the types of disputes that are amenable to it, the processes of conducting it, its challenges and its impacts on the justice delivery system in Ondo State. Both primary and secondary data were utilized. The primary data were collected through interviews with Judges/Magistrates, judicial officers, drawn from 4 judicial divisions in Ondo State. The Chairman of NBA in Ondo State was also interviewed. Secondary data were collected from books, journals, seminar and conference papers, and internet sources. The findings indicated that court congestion cases, delays associated with trials and high cost of litigation among other factors were responsible for the introduction of pre-trial conference in the state; it further revealed that issues relating to contract, land, landlord/tenant, banking, chieftaincy, and defamation are often treated with pre-trial conference and more so, the paper shows that pre-trial conference has, to some extent, facilitated effective settlement of disputes without having to go through trials. And of course, litigants find the process more satisfactory in terms of being cost effective and speedy resolution of disputes.



Full Text:



Abimbola, M L.(2013) Practice relating to Pre-trial Conference, Life gate Publishing Co. Ltd

Abraham Lincoln (1861-1865)1 Born Feb 12, 1809, Abraham Lincoln was the 16th President of the United States of America. On Good Friday, April 14, 1865, Lincoln was assassinated at Ford's Theatre in Washington by John Wilkes Booth, an actor, who somehow thought he was helping the South.

Adeyeye, B.F. (2013) The Road map in the operation of the rules Under the High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules 2012 – Filing to Judgment, A paper delivered at the stakeholders’ workshop on the High court civil Procedure Rules 2012 held at Ruby’s court, Akure on 9th – 11th April, 2013.

Aguda Akinola (1986) “The Crisis of Justice” Prof.YemiOsinbajo, in the foreword to Proposal for the Reform of the High Court of Lagos State (Civil Procedure) Rules p.V.

Akanbi M. M., (2004) “Kwara Multi-door House: An Idea Whose Time Has Come” paper delivered on the formal inauguration of the committee on the proposed Kwara State Multi-Door Courthouse at the High Court of Kwara State on Tuesday, 29th July, 2008, available at,%2029TH%20JULY,%202008.pdf, accessed on 22/09/2014.

AkinbuwaA. A., “Citizens Mediation Center and Multi-door Courthouse in Lagos State” in Law, Politics and Development, published by NBA Ikeja Branch, 2010, p. 327.

Aina, K. “Alternative Dispute Resolution” In Nigerian Law and Practice Journal, Council of Legal Education, Nigerian Law School, Vol. 2, No. 1, March 1988, p. 169 – 170.

Albert I. O. (2001). Introduction to Third Party Intervention in Community Conflict. Ibadan: John Archers Publishers Ltd., Ibadan

Falana, F. (2013)

Falana, O. ,(2010) Multi – door courthouse and alternative dispute resolution: Lagos and Abuja Experience, A seminar paper presented to the Faculty of Law, Obafemi Awolowo University, Ile – Ife.

Kalu, A.U Hon. Justice of the Abia State High Court 2011 being paper delivered at the 2011 Biennia National convention of the all Nigerian Magistrates Association on Thursday, 10th May, 2012 at Uyo, Akwa Ibom State.

Michael Stevenson, et al (1997): The Impact of Pre-trial Conferences: An Interim Report on the Ontario Pre-trial Conference Experiment, Osgoode Hall Law Journal, Volume 15, Number 3 (December 1977) Article 2

Moore, C. (1996). The Mediation Process: Practical Strategies for Resolving Conflicts. San Francisco, Jossey-Bass.

Musdapher, D. (2011), The Nigerian Judiciary: Towards Reform of the Bastion of Constitutional Democracy’, Fellows’ Lectures Series, Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Lagos.

Ogugua, P.I. (2003). Law and State in Africa with reference to Nigeria (A philosophical perspective). Ogirisi :A New Journal of African studies, Vol.1, No.1, Awka, Nigeria: Lumos Nigeria, Ltd, Philosophy Department, Nnamdi Azikiwe, Awka, Nigeria.

Onamade, P.A. Hon. (2013)The new High Court (Civil Procedure) Rules through the cases: A paper delivered at the stakeholders’ workshop on the High court civil Procedure Rules 2012 held at Ruby’s Court, Akure on 9th – 11th April, 2013.

Osinbajo, Y. (2011) The Retreat of the Legal Process, Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Lagos.

Racsmany, Z. (1998) ‘Conflict Prevention and Early Action in Albania: Too little, Too late?, In P. Wallensteen (ed) Preventing Violent Conflicts: Past Record and Future Challenges, Uppsala: Department of Peace and Conflict Research, 100 – 135.

Rosenberg (1964), The Pre-trial Conference and Effective Justice (New York: Columbia University Press, 1964).

Yadudu, A. H. (2010), The Nigerian Legal Profession: Towards 2010, NIALS Annual Lecture Series, 1997 and Reprinted in 2007 by the Nigerian Institute of Advanced Legal Studies, Lagos, p. 6.


  • There are currently no refbacks.