Accra,- Attorney of the 499 students seeking an injunction against the General Legal Council (GLC) have prayed the Court to grant them some time to respond to the Attorney General’s affidavit in opposition.

Lead Counsel Mr Martin Kpebu for the students, told a Human Rights Court (High Court) Division that they were served with the Attorney General’s affidavit in opposition after close of business Monday.

According to Counsel, due to that, he has not been able to seek his clients’ instructions in respect of issues raised in the AG’s affidavit in opposition as well as the GLC’s response to the injunction.

He therefore prayed the Court to grant them a short adjournment so that he could take further instructions from the applicants.

Nana Yaw Ntrekwah, who represented the GLC, argued that the instant application was at the behest of the applicants and that if they decided to pray for an adjournment anytime they appear in court, “it is their own cup of tea.”

Counsel for the GLC raised a preliminary objection to the suit, saying that when heard by the Court, it would lead to the resolution of the matter before the Court.

Mrs Grace Oppong, a Principal State Attorney, who represented the AG, did not oppose the grant of adjournment.

The Court presided over by Justice Nicolas Mensah Abodakpi admitted the supplementary affidavit filed on November 5, this year.

The Court held that if counsel for the applicants was minded to file further supplementary affidavits in support of his case, he should do that on notice so that the Court could rule on the same.

Meanwhile, the AG has opposed the application, saying it was unmeritorious and denied each allegation of fact of the applicants.

The AG held that “no irreparable damage would be done to the applicants since they did not pass the Ghana School of Law entrance examination.

It explained that on May 14, this year, the Independent Examination Committee of the GLC published in the Daily Graphic, the requisite information on the entrance examination for admission to the Professional Law Course of the Ghana School of Law for the 2021/2022 academic year.

“That, the rules governing the admission process were clearly set before the exams; it depended on passing or attaining the minimum threshold mark set by the General Legal Council” that was never missing from the advertisement.

According to the AG, the argument about “the retrospective nature of rules governing the admission falls.”

The AG held further that the GLC has not unjustifiably denied any candidate who passed the entrance examination admission to the Ghana School of Law.

It said,” had the applicants passed the examination, they would have been admitted by the second respondent (GLC).”

The AG argued that the applicant’s assertion that certain persons had communicated to them to the public that 50 per cent was the pass mark for the entrance examination “is palpably false” because it was the GLC that was responsible for setting the minimum threshold for the admission of eligible applicants and not those persons.”

It said the GLC on May 14 2021 publication in the Daily Graphic did not state 50 per cent or any mark as minimum threshold for admission to the Professional Law Course.

The first respondent (GLC) has not espoused a 50 per cent pass mark policy or practice in its previous newspaper publication as it is clearly seen in the applicant exhibit.

It argued that the minimum threshold for the admission to the Professional Law Course at the GSL had not been and is not always 50 per cent as there had been different pass marks other than 50 per cent.

“Contrary to the applicant’s assertion, they did not meet the minimum threshold for admission to the Profession Law Course.

The fact that the applicant obtained marks ranging from 50 to 61 did not mean that they met the minimum threshold mark for admission to the Professional Law Course.”

The AG argued that the minimum threshold mark set by the first respondent (GLC) for admissions to the Professional Law Course for the 2021/2022 academic year was a minimum threshold mark of 50 per cent each in the two sections for Part A and Part B of the examination.

It said applicants’ understanding of the minimum threshold had been misconstrued and that the GLC did not retroactively decide to fail the applicants as alleged by the applicant.

It therefore prayed the Court to dismiss the applications as frivolous and vexatious.

Attorney of the 499 students alleged to have failed their entrance examination, sued the GLC and the AG

The students filed the application asking for the decision to be quashed in a Certiorari application and further asked for the GLC to be compelled to admit the students.

The applicants are seeking among other things “a declaration that the conduct of the 1st Respondent in declaring the applicants as having failed the entrance examination into the Ghana School of Law for the Professional Law course held in August 21, this year, despite the fact that applicants had obtained marks between 50 and 61 out of a total 100 marks is a violation of Article 23, 25 and 17 9f the 1992 Constitution.

They are also praying for “An order of Certiorari to quash the decision of the 1st Respondent that only candidates who obtained at least 50% in each of the sections (A & B) of the Ghana School of Law entrance examination held on August 24, 2021 as contained in a notice published on October 4, 2021 by the Director of the Ghana School of Law on behalf of the Ghana Legal Counsel for being a violation of articles 23, 25 and 17 of the 1992 Constitution and for being unreasonable for having being made after the examination referred to in relief (i) but being applied to that exam.

“An order of mandamus to compel the first Respondent (GLC) to admit the applicants into the Ghana School of Law for the professional law course in this 2021/2022 legal year pursuant to reliefs (i) and (ii) above.

“A declaration that, the failure of the second Respondent (AG) to reign in the first respondent for the conduct of the 1st respondent as stated in relief (i) and (ii) constitutes a dereliction of the 2nd Respondent’s duties under Act 32.”

The matter has been adjourned to November 19.

Source: Ghana News Agency

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