I don’t see police during arbitration proceedings conducted by the Commission for Mediation and Arbitration (CMA). What if someone misbehaves during the proceedings. Can the arbitrator punish him for contempt of the Commission or order his arrest?
It is a contempt for the Commission under section 20(5)(h) of the Labour Institutions Act [Cap.300 R.E 2019] to misbehave in any manner that disrupts arbitration proceedings. The difference between contempt of Court and contempt of the Commission is that when a person commits contempt of Court by disrupting a Court session, he can be charged and convicted without calling witnesses to prove a charge against him. He is only asked to state why he should not be sentenced for contempt of court.
Unfortunately, the CMA does not have such criminal jurisdiction and an arbitrator presiding over the arbitration proceedings cannot impose a punishment on a person for contempt of the Commission. What the arbitrator can do when a person willfully disrupts arbitration proceedings is to call police to arrest the offender and charge him with contempt of the Commission in a criminal Court with competent jurisdiction to convict and punish the offender.