Mediation – Foundations

The organization
NAFAAS – is an acronym for the National Association of Fine and Applied Arts Students. It is a body that oversees the welfare of its members – the fine and applied arts students. It presents intricate issues as violation of student’s right to the department, organize social activities and exhibitions, and engage in educational tours and visits. It is also vested with the responsibility of raising and nurturing capable leaders to promote the “art” culture. The body is organized and governed by the following elected officers: The President, the Vice-President, Secretary General, Financial Secretary, the Treasurer, Director of Socials, Director of Sports and the Curator.
The members are all duly matriculated students of the University. They pay an annual registration fee to the body and attend general meetings when they are summoned.

The conflict
A misunderstanding ensured when it was time to utilize some money from the body’s account. The financial secretary has issued about a thousand receipts and handed over five hundred payments to the treasurer. The treasurer recorded the given amount and the receipts. Unknown to the treasurer, the financial secretary went to change the figures to reflect a collection of a thousand payment and receipt.
The president was to organize a welcome party for the association’s freshers only to discover that the money reflecting in the account differ greatly from the one recorded. An executive meeting was immediately summoned and the figures were laid based on the records. After much deliberation, the financial secretary and the treasurer were asked to account and pay for the loss otherwise they be sanctioned with expulsion.
For precisely two weeks, they could not see eye-to-eye. This called for another meeting.
Third party.
The curator, supported by the two-third majority of the house, moved the motion for a meeting and a meeting day was fixed. The agenda of course was to discuss and if possible to resolve the differences between the two executive members. The session lasted for about two hours with heated debate and arguments. The meeting was adjourned without a reasonable progress on how best to resolve the conflict. A third party was agreed upon unanimously – the Patron of the association. He was actually the “best” to resolve the conflict as the parties involved [treasurer, financial secretary] respects him so much, besides he is the first patron of the association.
The mediation
At a pre-determined date and time, the mediator [the patron] and the two parties involved in the conflict met at the Association’s secretariat. Then and there, the patron listened patiently as they both recount their role in the incident. The mediator, being a trained one observed the starts and stops, the inconsistency of the financial secretary tactfully asked “why are the figures in correcting fluid?” the financial secretary by surprise responded “no ”and later “I don’t know”. This question is supposed to have been directed to the treasurer being that he handles the recorded amount.
The subsequent questions, responses and gestures were all geared towards the mediator trying to facilitate solution progress. He tried as much as possible to cool the tensed atmosphere – a situation where no progress can be actualized. Further issues were raised about the carelessness of the treasurer – for keeping important and formal documents at such trivial places.
After much deliberation, a solution was finally reached. This was basically because of the status of and for the patron, otherwise the financial secretary already pre-determine he would negate all proposition that would subsequently lead to the findings – at least on a short term. The persuasion of the mediator [the patron] also did help matters. Emotion was deeply mixed with fact and the resultant effect was felt in the change of atmosphere. The financial secretary was finally willing to co-operate and let the cat out of the bag.
He confessed to both the patron and the treasurer that he was deeply sorry for the incident and the conflict. Later on, he was strongly advised by the patron never to perpetrate such act. The treasurer and the patron forgave him. The sessions lasted for roughly two hours, thirty-five munites and were advised to go about their daily activities without any mistrust. They also agreed never to share with any other person [executives inclusive] how it was resolved or who actually was at fault.
If I were the mediator, I would have made it a caucus interrogation. First, I would get background information from reliable sources about their attitudes and behaviors. This first hand research may or may not contribute towards knowing who actually was at fault or mediating them. After which I would personally interrogate them. I would facilitate solution progress by making relevant interrogations, delving deep into relevant issues that will sum up o the overall purpose – mediation.
After all efforts made and I do not get to the route of the matter, I may if I have, decide to fund the repay for peace’s sake. If I do not have the money, I will at my possible best try to convince them to tell the truth. I will remind them of their original willingness to resolve the whole issue. Then proceed to advice and warn against future occurrence. This I believe will make them want to resolve it all. I will also strongly warn that all discussions towards the process of mediation be treated as top secret for indeed they are.

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§  Dr. Mickey S. (2002).  Mediation – Foundations. Background information. Retrieved: February 22, 2007 from

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