The Government of Dubai Legal Affairs Department announced that it saw an upward trend in the percentage of Government disputes settled amicably in 2020. The percentage of complaints that were settled amicably in 2020 rose to 48% compared to 28% in 2019, and 22% in 2018.
Dr. Lowai Mohamed Belhoul, Director General of the Legal Affairs Department said "The Amicable Settlement Affairs Committee has successfully managed its internal operations, and held all meetings with parties of complaints or those in charge in Government entities remotely, without the need for physical attendance. These were held through video conferencing software approved by the Department for such purposes. The number of amicable settlement sessions held remotely amounted to 285. The Committee responded to 1214 phone inquiries in a prompt manner that met the expectations of customers."
His Excellency added, "Taking into account the diversity of nationalities and the importance of building effective communication when conducting amicable settlement negotiations with the opposing parties, 8 languages have been recognized and adopted for negotiation purposes."
Dr. Lowai Belhoul further explained that "in order to ensure that the rule of law is upheld and that the Department efficiently performs its duties with regard to the legal representation of other Government entities, the Department in 2020 represented Government entities in numerous claims lodged against them, which resulted in accumulated savings worth 1,016,503,000 dirhams.
Thriving in a Fast-changing World
Dr. Belhoul pointed out that "the performance indicators of the Government of Dubai Legal Affairs Department in 2020 reflected its resilience in coping with the swift challenges and changes, amid the exceptional circumstances imposed by Covid-19 all over the globe, and the measures that came along with it which constituted a great challenge for all organizations and brought everyone face to face with a new work reality."
His Excellency the Director General also emphasized that "the Department has effectively and efficiently responded to these challenges thanks to its forward-thinking approach that enabled it to fulfill the visions of the Dubai Government in achieving global competitiveness, achieving higher KPIs, and committing to the goals and targets of the comprehensive development, while at the same time enhancing the global reputation and prestige that the Emirate of Dubai enjoys in various fields. This is a new proof that the UAE is capable of turning challenges into opportunities for achieving excellence. It also proves that the UAE institutions have all it takes to provide services at a level that that meets the international best practices for business continuity and risk management."
"The Department sought to achieve its strategic goals, inspired by the directives of the visionary leadership, the values of excellence and pioneering, and unfaltering devotion and determination to take on its national responsibility towards making Dubai a leading global model in providing legal services that ensure sustainable development."
Dr. Belhoul further explained that "the Department was able to capitalize on its resources to ensure business continuity, quality, efficiency and productivity and meet the expectations of its customers by implementing policies and business plans based on human and technical enablers that ensure the continuity of achieving strategic goals which are related to the performance of the Department's functions and duties. In 2020, as remote work became the new normal during the pandemic, the Department managed to successfully provide all its services pursuant to its establishing law. To that end, the Department formed an executive team tasked with supervising and coordinating measures that are necessary to ensure business continuity in the Department during the pandemic, in line with the requirements of ISO 22301:2019 Security And Resilience — Business Continuity Management Systems —coupled with an action plan for developing and carrying out resilience scenarios in crisis management, and identifying and surmounting vulnerabilities and challenges."
The Legal Affairs Department has automated all the processes related to providing services at all stages, capitalizing on the state-of-the-art technology infrastructure it possess. The Department has also ensured to make various channels of communication accessible to its customers to keep them fully aware of the latest measures and developments imposed by the ever-changing nature of its work.