Is the law profession a true learned profession?

Mon, 13 May 2013 Source: Allotey, Henry Kpakpo

When I was deciding on what to do with my life regarding my career goals, so many options came into my mind. As someone who is good with computers, I considered Information Technology but had to discard it because I felt the I.T environment was somewhat choked. I then proceeded to consider a career in Marketing since I had done marketing in most of my working life. I had to discard that also because age was catching up with me and I felt most corporate organizations prefer recruiting young blood when it comes to marketing. I considered so many other career paths till I decided on Accountancy and choose to go the professional route by registering with the ACCA.

In my first ACCA class, I felt strongly intimidated because here I was sitting in a class with first class degree holders, HND graduates and other highly qualified professionals who are also switching their careers. The highest qualification I could boast of was an O-Level certificate which I completed in almost 17 years ago. I had other qualifications but they were all non-accounting related. Then the real test began.

In exactly 6 months we had to write our first 3 papers in level 1 which is Accountant in Business, Management Accounting and Financial Accounting. Those in class with all the big degrees were highly confident of passing while some of us with just ordinary certificates were naturally apprehensive. We all wrote the exams and had to wait for 6 weeks to receive our results.

The results came and only 2 of us managed to pass 2 papers in 3. Myself and another graduate with a non-accounting degree. The rest managed with single passes and some did not even pass at all. This naturally destroyed and deflated their confidence and eventually most of them had to drop the ACCA course to pursue their masters and other academic qualifications. Out of a total of 45 students that registered for the class, only 4 of us continued till this day.

I have watched and listened to Lawyers or folks in the legal profession refer to themselves as learned people. So arrogant are some of them that they think and believe they are larger than life. When we were young, Lawyers were those that commandeered our respect. But is the legal profession truly the learned profession?

Take a look at a Lawyer like Kwadzo Owusu Afriyie, known as Sir John. This man is the General Secretary of the largest opposition party in Ghana. When I was in Kumasi and used to listen to Otec FM, this man was a regular panelist on their morning show. So virulent and uncouth was this man that people even wondered if he was educated at all. Imagine my shock when I realized this uncultured, bush and unlettered man is actually a Lawyer of more than 20 years standing! Anybody who has listened to this man and continues to listen to him keeps on wondering the same sentiments I am expressing.

Has anybody here ever wondered why every politician these days want to be a Lawyer? Why almost everybody who goes to a law school graduates and becomes a lawyer? Have we ever wondered why every Doctor, Engineer, Accountant, Architect etc. can conveniently decide to switch careers and become a lawyer while lawyers will have difficulty switching their careers? The answer is not far-fetched: Every block headed person, every low intelligent person can be a lawyer! It does not take any extraordinary intelligence to be a lawyer. Every average student who can read and write can graduate and become a lawyer! Let me give you an example:

Nana Akuffo Addo: This man graduated from the University of Ghana with a 3rd class degree in economics. We have actually been told that was it not for his father, he could have been kicked out of the University for non-performance. Having realized that a career in economics will be too tough for his brains, he choose the wisest course of action by becoming a lawyer. We are now being told that a man who barely managed to graduate from the university in economics has now become an astute lawyer; a man who is so revered people dare not criticize him! That is how it is. Even the dumbest economist can become an astute lawyer! And you dare tell me the legal profession is a learned profession? Come again!

If the legal profession is such a learned profession, why did the N.P.P choose an economist in the person of Dr. Mahamadu Barwumia to be their arrowhead in the battle of the pink sheets at the Supreme Court? Have we not heard Sir John saying Barwumia is his God and he will worship him day and night? Can’t the Lawyers in the N.P.P find one of their ‘learned colleagues ‘to lead their battle at the Supreme court? Will you ever hear an Accountant, a Doctor, and Engineer etc. saying a Lawyer is his God and will worship him day and night? That tells you one thing: Among all the professionals, Lawyers are the dumbest and will worship other professionals no matter how average they are!

Now which profession will you find knuckleheads like Sir John, Ursula Owusu, Ayikoi Otoo, Akuffo Addo, Yaw Buaben Asamoah, Anthony Karbo, Gabby Asare Otchere Darko etc.? Definitely you will never find them in more noble professions like Accountancy, Medicine, Engineering and other professions requiring higher intelligence! It is only the Law profession that these dumb people can belong to.

Is the Law profession a learned profession? Surely with the facts enumerated above, we can answer better!

Henry Kpakpo Allotey


Columnist: Allotey, Henry Kpakpo