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LAW STUDENTS ON DEMO!

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…Against Deliberate Destruction of Bright Ghanaian Lives

www.ghanareaders.com

Report by Ernest Arhinful and Kwaku Aduamah Ansah, Citi News Room, with additional files by Daily Searchlight Editorial Team.

At a time that the three leading political figures in Ghana are lawyers, the nation of Ghana has taken the decision to destroy or at least put on hold or on pause the legitimate educational aspirations of hundreds of young people to become lawyers. This is in spite of the fact that these young people are qualified in all other factors. They have achieved First Degrees in Law, and they are willing to learn.

Shockingly, the only reasons militating for the extremely backward and retrogressive decision to deny them access to professional legal education, are retrogression and backwardness.

Members of the National Association of Law Students (NALS) and some persons who couldn’t make it into the Ghana School of Law this year hit the streets on Wednesday, October 20, 2021, to demand reforms in Ghana’s legal education regime.

The students had blamed the General Legal Council (GLC) for their inability to gain admission to the school.

Every one of those students forced to go on demonstration to assert their rights is a holder of a Bachelor of Laws Certificate, the same certificate that gained the Chief Justice of Ghana Justice Kwesi Anin-Yeboah admission to the Ghana School of Law. It is the same certificate that gained Ghana’s current Speaker of Parliament, Alban Kingsford Sumana Bagbin admission to the Ghana School of Law. Ghana’s current President, Nana Addo Dankwa Akufo-Addo, is a lawyer of note, even though it is reputed that he never attended the Ghana School of Law. But in his time, one did not even require a Bachelor of Laws to become a lawyer. Which means that he even had an easier path to the professional law practice than the Chief Justice and the Speaker of Parliament.

 

If all three of Ghana’s top leading political figures are lawyers, and they cannot create an easier path to that same profession for their sons, daughters and grand children and even great grand children coming after them, of what use are they?

On Wednesday, the future law students went through some principal streets of Accra and subsequently submitted a petition to Parliament. Michael Osei Koranteng, the leader of the students studying law at the Zenith University College in Accra, in a Citi News interview, said they are demonstrating because they believe the GLC is deliberately preventing more students from accessing legal education.

 

“This demonstration was organized by the National Association of Law Students in support of all 499 students who were denied admission because what affects your brother or sister also affects you. This thing has happened in the last two years, and it is still ongoing, and we can’t sit down and watch it.”

 

The pass mark for the entrance exams has always been 50% in both sections, but for this year’s exams, the rule was allegedly changed, so candidates had to score at least 50% in both sections before sailing through.

Some 499 candidates who were part of those who failed the exams insisted that they would have gained access to the Ghana School of Law if not for the new policy introduced by the GLC.

In September, the GLC in a press release indicated that 790 candidates out of a total of 2,824 students who sat for the 2021 entrance exams passed.

The aggrieved students are however unhappy with the said policy, hence their decision to protest to put pressure on the appropriate authorities to reform the legal education system.

Some of them held placards with inscriptions such as “Reform Legal Education Now, #We Need Total Reforms Now, GLC Is Not Above the Law”.

Other placards also read: “Justice For All 499 Students and Open Legal Education Now”.

(You can follow stories in the Daily Searchlight on www.thedailysearchlight.com or Daily Searchlight on our Facebook home page. Write to us on searchlightnews@yahoo.co.uk).

 

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