A former Deputy Attorney General, Joseph Kpemka, is in favour of calls to open up Ghana’s legal education after the recent controversies following the 2021 School of Law entrance exam.
Speaking on The Big Issue on Citi FM/TV, Mr. Kpemka said the latest calls for reforms to legal education must be considered.
“Even if it means we create a two-tier system with regular admission and fee-paying, we should go ahead. After all, we do that for medicine and other courses so many more people can be trained as lawyers,” he said.
For Mr. Kpemka, “the most important thing is not to compromise quality, but ensure that you open it up.”
“It shouldn’t become a cult,” he stressed further.
He argued further that Ghana actually required more lawyers in different spheres of society, especially in governance.
“Most of the ills that we have; procurement infractions and all the ills that we have in terms of government expenditure, most of it is as a result of the fact that lawyers are not in the system to advise agencies, departments, etc.”
The discussions around legal education this year have centred around 499 LLB graduates who were denied entry into the School of Law because they failed to obtain at least 50 percent in both sections of the entrance exam, despite making the pass mark.
To push for reforms, the South Dayi MP, Rockson-Nelson Dafeamekpor, and the Madina MP, Francis-Xavier Sosu, have moved to get the Legislative drafting department of Parliament to put together a Private Member’s Bill to amend the Legal Professions Act, 1960, Act 32.
The bill will, among other things, seek to amend Act 32, to exclude the Chief Justice as well as other Justices of the Supreme Court from the General Legal Council and redefine its functions.
Mr. Kpempka also agreed with the sentiment that the council needed to change.
“We can continue to allow the GLC because it is a creature of statutes, but we need some amendments.”
He however called for further consultations in this regard.
“We should engage more. There should be broader consultations, including the justices of the supreme court and the chief justice.” – CNR