A private legal practitioner and former Member of Parliament for Zebilla, John Ndebugre, has criticized Parliament’s interference in the controversy surrounding the 499 students who were denied entry into the Ghana School of Law.
Mr. Ndebugre on Eyewitness News said it was needless for the law-making house to intervene in the General Legal Council’s (GLC) quest to maintain the quality of legal education in Ghana by admitting a few students.
“There was this resolution by Parliament which I did not see the basis for it. They passed it [resolution] all the same and directed it to the Attorney General. He [Attorney General] has now reneged and addressed a letter to the GLC to admit the students somehow.”
Parliament had earlier instructed the GLC to admit the 499 aggrieved students.
The office of the Attorney General said Parliament’s directive was unlawful.
However, it has emerged in a letter written to the GLC before the parliamentary order, that the Minister of Justice, Godfred Dame, had actually asked the GLC to grant admission to the students.
In the letter, the Attorney General suggested that the students be admitted in November this year or in May 2022. He however recommended three pathways by which the admission can be done.
Mr. Ndebugri however fears that the quality of legal education in Ghana could be compromised if the admission processes are made flexible.
“I am not one of those who thinks that the law practice should belong to a certain family, but I believe it should be of a certain quality. If you want to become a lawyer, there is no problem, it is a fundamental human right, but you should pass through the process. The thing is that there is a certain number they [Ghana School of Law] want to admit so they draw the line when that number is attained,” he explained.
Already, some aggrieved students are in court challenging the refusal of the GLC to admit them.
The Minority in Parliament has also filed a motion in parliament requesting for the removal of the Attorney General through a vote of censure for telling parliament that it does not have the power to ask the General Legal Council to admit the students.
The Attorney General was recently criticized for suggesting that practicing law is a privilege and not a right