Stop the banter with Parliament

Godfred Dame

Private legal practitioner, Professor Kwaku Azar, has descended on the Attorney General (AG), Godfred Dame, over his position that Parliament cannot direct the General Legal Council (GLC) on its admission processes by Resolution.

According to him, it is entirely appropriate for Parliament to direct the moribund GLC to follow the law, even if through a non-binding resolution.

His comment comes after Parliament last week unanimously voted, directing the GLC to immediately admit the 499 students who passed but have been denied admission to the Ghana School of Law.

The House further directed the AG to ensure that this Resolution is respected.

But in a letter addressed to the Speaker of Parliament, Mr Dame argued that Parliament cannot use a Resolution to make such directions.

“Whilst recognising the general legislative powers of Parliament in Ghana, except as have been circumscribed by the Constitution, I am constrained to advise that Parliament is devoid of power through the use of Parliamentary resolutions, to control the process of admission into the Ghana School of Law.

“The mode of exercising legislative power enshrined in article 106 of the Constitution does not admit of resolutions,” part of his letter read.

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However, Mr Azar says he cannot fathom why the AG acknowledges that he has the power to direct the GLC but does not tell Ghanaians why he has not used that power.

To him, the real progress of the matter will be for the AG to use its power to direct the accredited Law Faculties to offer the “PLC” to anyone who has an LLB.

“Let us do a natural experiment and compare performance on the licensing exams of students who study at the school versus those who study at the Faculties!

“It will test the maintained hypothesis that the School has a comparative advantage over the Faculties in the teaching of Family Law, Procedure, Evidence, ADR,” he said in a lengthy Facebook post.

He notes such a system will allow the Law Faculties to improve their rankings in Africa by allowing them to offer these foundational courses that have been hijacked by the school.

“Competition will improve quality and innovation and potentially reduce cost. We will see smaller classes and rational timetables, not this forced 12 hours a day camp in poorly ventilated facilities,” he opined.

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