Accra, Jan. 21, GNA – The General Legal Council is reviewing the curriculum for a Faculty of Law to be established at the University of Cape Coast (UCC) in August, this year.
Chief Justice, Mrs Georgina Theodora Wood, who announced this, said the emergence of Faculties of Law in the country called for concern since the proliferation of institutions could lead to a fall in the standard of legal education.
She made the call in an address read on her behalf by Mr Julius Ansah, a Supreme Court Judge, at the inauguration of the 21-Member Council and Matriculation of the pioneer students of MountCrest University College in Accra on Saturday.
The Council is under the chairmanship of Professor Emeritus William Cornelius Ekow-Daniels, a distinguished Lawyer while Professor Emeritus A. Kodzo Paaku Kludze, Dean of Faculty of Law of the University College, administered the Matriculation Oath.
The University took off on November 1, 2011 with 190 students made up of 162 undergraduates in Law, Public Health and Health Service Management and 28 post graduates in Law, Public Health and Health Service Management. Mrs Wood said, “The Council, in the light of the proliferation of Law Faculties will soon come out with a blue print on the establishment of Faculties of Law in the country.
“Plans are far advanced to organise a stakeholders’ conference on the future of legal education in Ghana, in particular, with regard to admission of law graduates in the Ghana School of Law.”
The Chief Justice noted that it was the expectation of the Council that the proliferation of Law Faculties in the country would impact positively on the standard of legal education in the country.
“The Council will insist and ensure that standards are not sacrificed for mediocrity. It will not hesitate to curb any excesses that might lead to the lowering of standards.”
Mrs Wood said with the surge in the number of tertiary institutions in Ghana since the emergence of University Colleges on the higher education horizon, the education sector had witnessed the establishment of numerous institutions to satisfy the high demand of Ghanaians who wished to receive higher, which hitherto, had been solely delivered by public tertiary institutions.
She pointed out that the establishment of MountCrest University College, however, provided a breakthrough of opportunities at the higher education level unknown before in the history of tertiary education development. “This being the first private tertiary institution in Law, history has been made in the Legal Education in Ghana and the visionaries that have carefully and meticulously put together the innovative programmes available on offer to students deserve our congratulations.
“It is also a historic landmark to note that the first private tertiary institution in Law is offering programmes at both the undergraduate and post-graduate levels.”
The Chief Justice expressed appreciation that the Faculty of Law at MountCrest University College had a world class teaching faculty capable and competent enough to produce first-class law graduates which would be the pride of the nation.
“The persons and varied qualifications and experience they bring on board the Council gives me the assurance that the University is set to be the University College to beat, and would progress steadily to the stage of maturity where it will give its own degrees and certificates sooner than the average University College currently takes to mature,” she added.
Mrs Wood charged the Council to assist the institution to cut its teeth from the status of a College into Charter in the not-too-distant future. Mr Kwaku Ansa-Asare, Former Director of Ghana Law School and Proprietor of the University College, said, “History is not only being made but indeed has been made. This is the first time in the annals of the history of tertiary education in Ghana that a couple has established a University College proudly and wholly Ghanaian”.
He was optimistic that the proprietors had laid a solid foundation for the Council to move the institution to one of international repute and global recognition in the short, medium to long term.
Mr Ansa-Asare said the challenge facing the Council was to assist in establishing a world class University which would win the respect and admiration of the international academic community.
“We believe we have hit the ground running already. We have given the students a world-class teaching faculty and there can be no doubt whatsoever that teaching so far has won the commendation of the students. “It is our fervent hope that the Council will ensure that this high-standard is maintained throughout their tenure of office.”
Mr Ansa-Asare was optimistic that the Council would help build a University of international repute for the transformation of lives. Mrs Sylvia Welbeck on behalf of the Matriculants said expectations were high from the students to set higher academic standards for future students to emulate. She was optimistic that the infant University College would become the centre of excellence not only in Ghana but beyond.
Mrs Welbeck commended the proprietors for their courage to bring their ideas to fruition.