The Attorney General and Minister of Justice, Godfred Dame, is proposing an amendment to the Legal Professions Act.
The amendment is to provide a framework for the licensing of universities to run Bachelor of Laws programmes.
The draft bill is expected to sanitise universities offering the Bachelor of Laws programme “and provide for a standardised way of monitoring these institutions to ensure optimum performance.”
“This will also improve on the quality of Bachelor of Laws graduands from these universities and with time, make their entry into Professional Law Course programme more seamless and effortless,” the draft Bill added.
According to the draft bill, there are currently no modalities under which such approval is to be given by the General Legal Council, and “this has resulted in the establishment of different law faculties in various universities with wide and differential standards in teaching and infrastructure.”
The Minister stated in the bill that the existing law does not give modalities for which the General Legal Council grants approval to Universities to run the bachelor of law degree programme.
He is therefore proposing the establishment of a council to grant licenses to Universities, which are to be renewed every four years.
The Universities running the LLB programmes that require tuition fees are also mandated to take an insurance policy against loss of tuition fees in case the institution is closed down.
The draft bill would also maintain the passing of an entrance examination and interview sessions as a prerequisite for enrolling into the the training of lawyers with reference to pupillage and requirements for an annual solicitor’s licence, additional requirements for admission into the Ghana School of Law comprising passing an entrance examination and an interview conducted for that purpose, and the discipline of lawyers with respect to professional misconduct.
The Bill further provides for the Legal Practitioners’ Privileges Committee.
“The Committee is tasked with the responsibility of recommending to the General Legal Council, privileges to be conferred on a member of the Bar including the conferment of the award of Senior Advocate, Ghana on a member of the Bar,” the draft bill added.