Member of Parliament for Bawku Central, Mahama Ayariga, has disclosed that Parliament is willing to increase the budgetary allocation to the Ghana School of law in order to help it expand and admit more law students.
According to him, parliament is prepared “to as a House work with the Law School to be able to address that space constraint”. Commenting on parliament’s direction to the General Legal Council to admit the 499 candidates who were denied admission to the Ghana School of Law, Mr Ayariga noted that he is optimistic the issue will be resolved in order to maintain justice and fairness in the country.
“If the issue is space as the President indicated, in keeping with the requirement of fairness, we thought that as a Parliament, we were willing to work towards increasing the budgetary allocation to the Law School to be able to admit and provide training for the additional number of students”.Mr Mahama Ayariga
Meanwhile, a Private Legal Practitioner Baffour Awuah has expressed that parliament’s decision to admit the students to the Ghana school of law is not grounded in law.
According to him, there is no law that compels the GLC to comply with the directives of the House. Mr Awuah explained that the House does not have the power to direct the Council to act in such manner.
“It is like Parliament saying they have passed a directive to compel the President to act in one way or the other. I don’t think that it is grounded in law. I am yet to come across a law that obliges the GLC to comply with the directive of Parliament in the manner which they have done…”.Mr Baffour Awuah
Reforms needed to address challenges
Mr Awuah indicated that caution is required with regards to the approach being used by parliament in addressing the issues of the Law School.
“What we need as a people is to now confirm the problem they have and make sure there is reform, but there ought to be transparency in terms of the system (at the Law School)”.Mr Baffour Awuah
Despite empathizing with the students, Mr Awuah insisted that there should be a thorough investigation done to ensure fairness.
“(We need to) particularly ask ourselves whether or not at the time when the exam was being written, the standard the law school is holding on to was one that was in force and was known to people. If that was consistent with article 23 and 296 of the Constitution, in other words, they are not being capricious, they are not being arbitrary. But if that was not an issue then there is a problem”.Mr Baffour Awuah
In a motion filed by Deputy Majority Leader, Alexander Afenyo-Markin, the House massively voted in support of admitting the students who passed the entrance exams to the school. The Effutu legislator had described the actions of the GLC, post the entrance examination, as unacceptable.
According to Afenyo-Markin, once left unaddressed, it would make the law course unappealing to prospective applicants.