The inception of online dispute resolution(odr) in Kenya: understanding that Kenyan legal practitioners can still have a place in the odr space

Kibati], Malcolm Melita Ngure
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Strathmore University
In what could serve as the premise for a dystopian, apocalyptic tale of the fall of humankind, in 2017 the first robotic artificial intelligence was given citizenship in the United Arab Emirates. Albeit being of purely symbolic purposes, the principle behind it still stands: technology is slowly becoming integrated into every aspect of human life. In fact, technology may very well evolve into a necessity due to its convenience, as in the present day the time and cost-saving nature of, for example, shopping online, is irrefutable. The question then arises: where is the place of the legal profession in this future?
There is an immense backlog of cases facing the Kenyan court system. 1 Given this situation, it would seem vital to employ alternative methods to clear this case accumulation. Article 159 of the Constitution of Kenya offers a panacea by affording the judiciary the ability to utilise alternative forms of dispute resolution, 2 a concept which is capitalized on in Republic v Mohamed Abdow Mohamed. 3 As this provision does not purport to encompass every alternative possible, the Constitution paves the way for incorporation of ODR within the Kenyan jurisdiction.