Mr Haruna Iddrisu, the Minority Leader in Parliament, has urged President Akufo-Addo to constitute a legal education reform commission to find lasting solution to the legal education impasse in the country.
Ghana’s legal education system has received huge backlash from some law students, lawyers and the public over the last couple of years with many calling for immediate reforms in the legal profession, especially at the Ghana Legal Council (GLC).
Calls for immediate reforms have, however, been much louder over the past few weeks due to the GLC’s decision not to admit some 499 law students into the Ghana School of Law, despite having attained the 50 percent pass mark for the Council’s entrance exams.
Receiving a petition on behalf of the Speaker of Parliament from the leadership of the National Association of Law Students in Accra on Wednesday, he said the President must immediately intervene to find a lasting solution to the impasse.
He said the Commission must include retired deans from the Ghana School of Law, including the University of Ghana, to ensure that appropriate proposals were made to transform the legal profession.
Let me use this opportunity to call on President Nana Akufo-Addo to, without any hesitation and as a matter of urgency, constitute a legal education reform commission, which must include a number of retired deans of the Ghana School of Law including Legon, to look into the matter,” he said.
The Minority Leader said the inadequacy of space at the School of Law remained a major challenge confronting legal education in Ghana.
He, therefore, appealed to the Government to make available enough resources to the Law School and the GLC to enable them to increase accessibility.
“I have no hesitation sharing your view for a clinical eye on legal education in Ghana in particular because I share your view that legal education is at an important point in Ghana today, and there is a disconnect between the number of persons desirous of acquiring a legal education today and wanting to develop careers in law and the opportunities available by way of space and professional opportunities for training,” he said.
“The space question can be dealt with through adequate budgetary allocation to the Ghana School of Law and to the affected Ministry in order that they make access increasingly available without compromising quality,” he added.
On the 499 students who had been denied admission, he said Parliament would look into the merits of it and advise accordingly.
“As representatives of the people, we will subject it to a thorough scrutiny and debate and consequential action arising thereof will be applied adequately,” he assured.
Members of the National Association of Law Students embarked on a demonstration to among other things demand reforms in the country’s legal education system.
The Association, led by its President, Mr Asare Hassan, presented petitions to the leadership of Parliament, as well as to the Presidency for consideration.
He urged Parliament to immediately intervene and ensure that all 499 students who obtained the pass mark were admitted into the Ghana School of Law.