‘In the coming weeks, we will open accounts for over 500 women and caregivers whose children have been awarded child maintenance by the Board,’ she said. ‘At the end of the day, we will ensure we open accounts for all child maintenance awarded by the Board.’
With the opening of the account, Fatmata will no longer have to come to the Finance Office of the Board to collect child maintenance money of Le 200,000 (two hundred thousand leones). She will now have to go to the bank to withdraw money deposited into her account by the Board. According to the settlement reached by the Board’s Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) Department the amount will increase to Le 250,000 (two hundred and fifty thousand leones) after three months.
The opening of the child maintenance account comes as a huge relief to the Board which has been struggling to cope with the increasing number of mothers and caregivers coming to the office at the end of the month to collect monies received from fathers of their children.
This is because child maintenance matters account for the majority of cases mediated by the Board’s ADR. Also, the fact that the Board has been securing court orders for maintenance cases has increase compliance with settlement reached.
‘We have been able to achieve this much because of the support of the Chair of the Board, Justice Miatta Samba who had pushed for court orders for all settlements reach for maintenance matters by the Board’s ADR Department,’ the Executive Director of the Legal Aid Board, Ms. Fatmata Claire Carlton-Hanciles said.