Is Mediation a Win/lose or win/win Scenario?

The CAMs workshop with the Traditional Council of Bombe Bakundu entered it last phase on Wednesday August 28, 2013 with nine of its members present to give an answer to the said question. The staff of GCI that facilitated in the workshop were Ebeny, Giorgia and Ngoasong who joined the team to the field for the first time. It was the continuation of the Mediation workshop that was recently done with its main goal to strengthen the ability of the Traditional Council skills to resolve disputes brought to them in their community.

Enlightening the participants on Mediation, the Facilitator began by differentiating the Good Mediation process from the Bad Mediation process. Giorgia explained using a poster tested the participants ability to be able to retain what was taught previously on Mediation skills and process. They were able to distinguish the characteristics of bad mediation from good mediation.  This will include being partial, not welcoming, arrogance, inability to listen carefully to disputants, discriminatory decisions as some bad signs of Mediation and objective criterion, impartiality, creative solution, welcoming, brainstorming etc. as some ingredients of good mediation. Taking these qualities into consideration, participants were assured that these are the essentials to take into serious consideration to come out with a successful and rational judgment in a Mediation process which will at end give us a peaceful community.

Giorgia equally stressed on the fact that the Councilors should always endeavor to focus on the INTEREST of all cases are not on the POSITION of the disputants. The defendant can be given another alternative to pay his debt other than in cash if faced with a financial difficulty to pay his debt. He can also settle it through other means initiated by the council like providing materially worth the amount owing or partially. That is to say, at the end of the day, it is the interest of the disputants that influences the verdict.

The second phase of the workshop involved two mock cases. The first case was demonstrated by the GCI staff and the second case was presented and demonstrated by all participants (councilors)   to make the session participatory and to broaden their scope of understanding the Mediation process better. The first case was on debt while the second was on a bridge of contract between a land owner and a tenant. GCI staff demonstrated the first case using the bad and good mediation rules while the member of the council watched. The bad mediation verdict is a win/lose scenario   while the good mediation verdict is a win/win as the disputants went home satisfied. The second case was then acted by two GCI staff Ngoasong and Ebeny as disputants and the Council members as Councilors: applying the rules of a bad and  a good mediation. The councilors made good use of the techniques they had gained from the theoretical and practical demonstration which they finally arrived at the best decision: win/win for both disputants

This workshop was the last of a series of workshops as the Traditional Council was satisfied and embraced the new mediation techniques learned as they resolve to apply it during their normal council session during mediation. GCI finally expressed their willingness to still continue with the cordial relation with the council and promised to come up with other similar sessions and other areas of interest for the peace and development of the Bombe Community.

Abrelegwi Ngoasong.