The Supreme Court has dismissed an interlocutory application that sought to halt the entrance exams into the Ghana School of Law (GSL) slated for today, Friday, July 27, 2018.
Professor Stephen Kweku Asare, a US-based Ghanaian lawyer, filed the interlocutory injunction application.
In his application, Professor Asare argued that the General Legal Council (GLC) was in contempt of a judgement delivered by the court on June 23, 2017.
In the said June 23, 2017 judgement, the Supreme Court declared as unconstitutional a requirement by the GLC that persons seeking to enter the GSL needed to pass an entrance examination and an interview.
It also ordered the GLC to take steps within the next six months to review the process of admission to the GSL.
Professor Asare wanted the court to put an injunction on the entrance exams because according to him, the GLC failed to meet the six months deadline given by the apex court.
According to him, the new Legislative Instrument (L.I), governing the admission into the GSL, contravenes the judgement of the Supreme Court.
But in a unanimous decision today, a five-member panel the court, held that the new law was duly enacted.
Also, the court held that on the balance of convenience, the GLC stood to suffer more and cannot be compensated if the entrance exams were halted.
The court was presided over by Mr Justice Julius Ansah, with Mr Justice Jones Dotse, Mr Justice Anin Yeboah, Mr Justice A A Benin and Mr Justice Yaw Pwamang as the other members
In October 2015, Professor Asare initiated a legal action challenging the legality of the criteria for admission used by the GSL.
He argued that entrance exams and interviews which were requirements for admission into the GSL were illegal and unconstitutional.
On June 23, 2017, a seven-member panel of the Supreme Court upheld his suit and declared the two requirements as unconstitutional
The court, therefore, ordered the GLC to review the process of admission into the GSL within six months.
Due to the court’s order, Parliament in March 2018, passed a new Legislative Instrument (LI) governing admission into the GSL.
The new LI scrapped the interview aspect of the admission requirement but maintained the entrance exams.
Professor Asare then filed a new application in June 2018, with the case that the GLC failed to review the admission process within the stipulated six months period as ordered by the Supreme Court.
According to him, the deadline to review the admission process was December 22, 2017, and therefore GLC by failing to meet the deadline is in contempt of the court.
He argued that in effect due to the GLC’s failure to meet the deadline, the old law that governed admission into the GSL, LI 1296, which was declared unconstitutional was still in force.
He, therefore, among other reliefs wanted an order directing the GLC to admit all qualified LLB degree holders before the passage of the new LI governing the admission process.
Credit: Graphic Online