Dear Mr. President,
On one of my visits to Sierra Leone, I found out that there are only about 100 lawyers to serve a population of 5.3 Million people which is a ratio of about one lawyer to every 53 thousand citizens.
On my visits to the courts, I find a very crowded criminal docket; cases in the civil courts take an inordinate amount of time from filing to ajudication, the rules of civil and criminal procedure in Sierra Leone appear to be non extant, there does not appear to be a penal (...) Full story
It is a very good idea and its successful in Ghana. Honorable this will bring transparency to Sierra Leone court of law and the citizens of Sierra Leone will have a better choice.
GO FOR IT..............
Attorney M. Alieu Iscadari’s letter to the President dated Sept. 29, 2010 is timely and progressive. It is progressive in the sense that his ideas can have a tremendous impact curtailing the so called " legal brain drain" of Sierra Leone. However, I would respectfully argue or rather object to his proposal to the President of the Republic of Sierra Leone is misdirected and I’ll qualify my argument in a minute.
Though, the Sierra Leone Parliament - the legal authority to amend laws in the country repealed and amended the Legal Practitioners Act in 2004 and also in 2005 (see amendments below) allowing lawyers in common law jurisdictions to practice law in Salone after five years instead of ten, it certainly didn’t go far enough to encourage Sierra Leoneans in the diaspora to want to come back home and serve their people.
But back to my contention that Attorney Iscandari’s request is misdirected, he should have directed his proposal to the members of parliament because Salone is not a dictatorial government wherein the president makes the law, that is the parliament jurisdiction.
1. Section 15 of the Legal Practitioners Act, 2000 is repealedn common law juridsdictions
and replaced by the following:–
“Exemptions 15. (1) Subject to subsection (2), the
Council may admit to practise law in Sierra Leone
any applicant who satisfies the Council that –
(a) he has been admitted and enrolled as a legal
practitioner in any Commonwealth country
approved by the Council; and
(b) he has practised law in such country for a
period of not less than ten years; and
(c) he is a fit and proper person to be granted
exemption from the requirements of section
(2) An application under subsection (1) shall not be
granted unless the applicant is a citizen of a Commonwealth country
which has legal provision for granting an exemption which is–
(a) similar to subsection (1); and
(b) applicable to citizens of Sierra Leone.
(3) Notwithstanding subsection (2), a person referred to
in paragraphs (a) and (b) of subsection (1) shall be granted an
exemption from the requirements of section 10 in respect of his
employment as a legal practitioner either in the Judicial and Legal
Service or otherwise in the service of the State, while he remains so
. Sections 36 and 37 of the principalNo. 2 Legal Practitioners (Amendment) Act 2005 No. 2 Merchant Shipping (Amendment) Act 2005
No. 2 2005
The Legal Practitioners (Amendment) Act, 2005.
Being an Act to amend the Legal Practitioners Act, 2000.
[10th March, 2005]
ENACTED by the President and Members of Parliament in this
present Parliament assembled.
Date of commencement.
Section 15 of the Legal Practitioners Act, 2000 is amended in
subsection (1) by the substitution for the words “ten years” appearing
in paragraph (b) thereof, of the words “five years”.
of section 15
of Act No. 15
PRINTED AND PUBLISHED BY THE GOVERNMENT PRINTING DEPARTMENT, SIERRA LEONE.
GAZETTE NO. 11 OF 10TH MARCH, 2005.
Passed in Parliament this 8th day of February, in the year of our Lord two
thousand and five.
J. A. CARPENTER,
Clerk of Parliament.
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