Chief Justice Gertrude Sackey Torkornoo (right) administering the oath of the legal profession
Chief Justice Gertrude Sackey Torkornoo (right) administering the oath of the legal profession

182 Lawyers called to the Bar

A hundred and eighty-two newly qualified lawyers have been inducted into the legal profession, with a call on them not to take shortcuts in the pursuit of justice for their clients. 

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The Chief Justice, Justice Gertrude Sackey Torkornoo, who made the call at the Accra International Conference Centre in Accra last Saturday, said this would help increase the competence in the legal profession.  

“You cannot take shortcuts or assume that the rights and interests of those you serve can be rescued without proper preparation. “The legal profession demands a high level of expertise and we owe a debt to put in all the preparatory hard work, and seek assistance where necessary, in order to deliver quality justice,” the Chief Justice said at the mini call to the bar. 

Call

The call is pursuant to section seven of the Legal Profession Act, 1960 (Act 32) which states that “The General Legal Council shall from time to time hold formal meetings at which duly qualified applicants shall be enrolled and called to the bar, but the Council may at their discretion dispense with the formalities under this section in any particular case”.

The event was witnessed by friends, family and well-wishers of the inductees. Among them was Gifty Afenyi-Dadzie, a Ghanaian journalist and media practitioner.

The inductees also included social media influencer, Elorm Ababio, popularly known as Ama Govina, who was denied entry to the bar on two occasions by the General Legal Council following a complaint about her “conduct”.

Justice Torkornoo led the new lawyers to take the oath of the legal profession and also declare an undertaking that enjoins them to practise the profession in accordance with the prescribed code of conduct and rules.

Present at the event were the Deputy Attorney-General and Minister of Justice, Diana Asonaba Dapaah; the President of the Ghana Bar Association, Yaw Acheampong Boafo; the Director of the Ghana School of Law (GSL), Barima Yaw Kodie Oppong, and other superior court judges. 

Society

The Chief Justice explained that developing nations were facing unprecedented challenges such as unbridled mining of farm lands, forests and global warming. These challenges, she said, required the wisdom, resilience and understanding of lawyers on how to translate the legal norms they had learnt in constitutional law, contract, tort, criminal law, intellectual property and apply them to the factual situations of human interaction with technology.

She said even more challenging were the rapid advancements in technology, shifting societal norms and global interconnectedness which were reshaping the manner in which the law must be understood to deliver justice.

Justice Torkornoo, therefore, urged the lawyers to apply research and knowledge to express themselves and guide those who looked to them in their role as guardians of the rule of law.

“As legal professionals, we must ensure that these situations do not move us from the coherence, harmony, protectiveness and principle-based structure of the law.  Our contributions should help build up society, not tear it apart,” she said.

Speaking on the law and legal profession, the Chief Justice urged the newly qualified lawyers to approach their work with a profound sense of duty and responsibility. “Let your actions reflect not merely your ambitions, but also serve as a testament to the sacrifices of those who paved the way for the progress of the legal profession.

“A generation from now, I am confident that the names that have been called today will become the names that inspire another batch of new lawyers,” she added. Speaking to the media after joining the bar, Mrs Afenyi-Dadzie said the knowledge acquired would enhance her contribution towards the country’s democracy.

The former member of the Council of State, who commenced her legal education at the University of London and continued her post call at the Ghana School of Law, said at her age, the journey to joining the bar had been difficult.

Mrs Afenyi-Dadzie urged the public not to abandon their dreams, adding: “When you think you’re failing, persevere and God will see you through. “For me this is the doing of the lord and it’s marvelous in our sight,” she said.

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