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Thursday, December 3, 2020

Law school exam “designed” to “exclude” people – Bentil


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The law school entrance exam is designed to only allow a few people in because of lack of space, private lawyer Kofi Bentil has said.

Out of the 1,820 candidates who sat for the Ghana School of Law Entrance Exam 2019, only 128 of them passed, according to the results posted on the notice board of the school.

The examination was in two parts: two written questions and objectives.

There was a similar magnitude of failure last year.

Chief Justice Sophia Akuffo earlier this year stated that the mass production of lawyers will not happen under her watch.

She stated: “Those of you lawyers and those of you lecturers who are busy advocating free scale, mass admissions into the professional law course, and mass production of lawyers, be careful what you wish for.”

“So long as I have anything to do with it, it won’t happen. Just like you can’t mass-produce doctors and surgeons, Ghanaians must not have mass-produced lawyers imposed on them,” the Chief Justice said when she addressed the Bench, Bar and Faculty Conference at the Labadi Beach Hotel on the theme: ‘The Changing Landscape in the Law – the Judge, the Lawyer and the Academic’.

Speaking on the mass failure of students, Mr Bentil, who described the situation as “terrible” and “tragic”, told Accra-based Joy FM’s morning show on Wednesday, 25 September 2019 that: “It is not true that these young men and women are not qualified for the law school”.

“If you have an examination, which is preset to exclude people, regardless of how well they do, then that is patently unfair”, he said.

“If it’s an examination, then what it means is that theoretically, technically, everybody can pass, and if that examination was really meant to bring out people who could pass and then give them spaces, then it means they must have the number of spaces there in the law school according to the number of people who were writing the exam because theoretically, they can all pass but Kpemka [Deputy Attorney General] has just told you: ‘We don’t have the space’.

“In all kinds of discussions on this matter, it’s been made very clear that the entrance exam is directly designed to exclude people because there is a problem with space.

“And that tells you that the government – and I don’t mean just this government – but governments up till now, and this government, have failed, refused and neglected to deal with this problem. The government is throwing away qualified young people and all they ask is that: play your part, do your work, give them space to learn”, Mr Bentil, who is the Vice-President of think tank Imani Africa, argued.


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