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Parliament’s Decision will Reform the Ghana Law School – Ahiafor

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The Deputy Ranking member on the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee of Parliament, Bernard Ahiafor, has expressed confidence that the decision taken with regards to the Ghana law school, would go along way to help in reforming the school and legal education in the country.

According to him, the planned stakeholders’ meetings recommended by the Parliamentary Committee would in no doubt create an avenue for all views as to the best way to run the Law School as well as the entire legal education.

Mr Ahiafor made these assessing to THE REPUBLIC after the Committee had submitted its report to parliament on Wednesdays April 3, in Accra.

The Committee in its report recommended for a certain strenuous decision to be taking with immediate effect by the School of Law as well as the General Legal Council (GLC) and the Independent Examination Council (IEC).

The select committee also recommended to the General Legal Council and the Law School to reduce the current remarking fee from GHc3,000 to GHc500 for the students.

Parliament had also asked the GLC to re-open the period for remarking for the General Legal Council and the law school failed students of the Ghana School of Law who couldn’t register to do so.

Further, the legislators want the “Independent Examination Council (IEC) to consider holding Supplementary Examination for all referred candidates in the 2018 Professional Law Course Examination in a timely manner to ensure that successful candidates are enrolled in a year.

The Motion was moved by Chairman of the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs, Ben Abdallah Banda, MP for Offinso South.

Mr Ahiafor, Member of Parliament for Akatsi South, seconded the motion and in his contribution to the report urged parliament to adopt same.

He stated that, during the deliberation, the Committee gathered that, students who had failed with 36 per cent and called for remarking ended up been passed with over 70 percent.

He noted that, questions set for students felt outside approved subject manual and for which reason, the committee took the view that the IEC set the examination questions within the scope of those manuals.

In addition to that, the IEC also refused or failed to give out its examiners report both students and lectures, stating, ” the committee considers this default quite worrying in view of the usefulness of the two documents to both lectures and law students.”

Recounting the genesis of the recommendation, the lawmaker said, a group of professional law students presented a petition to the Rt. Hon. Speaker of Parliament in what they sought for a review of the results of the 2017/2018 professional law course examination.

The Speaker, he said referred the petition to the Committee on Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs for deliberation and report back to parliament.

The Committee, he said met with the students leadership ,some lectures of the Ghana school of law, the General Legal Council and after deliberation presented a report to parliament.

He said, as part of the committee five detailed recommendation, the Committee also planned to engage all stakeholders in the legal education sector to consider reforming the Legal Profession (Amendment) Bill, 2018 which has been laid in the House and currently before the Committee.

He said, during the meeting with the Committee, it was confirmed only 64 out of the 525 students who sat the exam passed, while 284 of them failed and 177 referred.

After consideration of the Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee Report, Mr Ahiafor said, parliament has asked the General Legal Council to hold supplementary exams for all referred candidates and the supplementary exams must be conducted in a timely manner to ensure that successful candidates are enrolled this year.

After contribution on the Committee Report, the Speaker of Parliament, Prof Aaron Mike Oquaye, directed that the report should be transmitted to the Attorney General, the General Council and other stakeholders at the School of law “for appropriate action.”

Meanwhile, the students are happy with the Parliament’s action so far, with Emmanuel Kobby Amoah, the President of the Student Representative Council saying “most of our concerns have been addressed.”

He expressed hope that the stakeholders would come together “to bring a lasting solution so that the review of Act 32 will reflect what we are looking for as a student body and what will help free education in Ghana.”

Source: Felix Nyaaba || therepublicnewsonline.com

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