Some major hurdles may have been cleared for the Government to establish a law school in Guyana.
This is according to Attorney General (AG) and Minister of Legal Affairs, Basil Williams.
During a press briefing held at his Carmichael Street Office yesterday, Williams noted that the steps have been taken to address concerns surrounding the establishment of the JOF Haynes Law School.
“We have gone past that stage now and we are looking the feasibility study and the plan to build the school.
He revealed that the University of Guyana has already approved some 10 acres of land at the Turkeyen, Greater Georgetown Campus to house the institution
Williams emphasized too that the establishment of a law school is essential now that the nation is at the cusp of transformation.
Guyana is only allowed 25 students to enter the law programme at the Hugh Wooding Law School in Trinidad and Tobago as opposed to the twin-island republic and Jamaica which are churning out approximately 200 students per year.
As such, the AG stressed that the country cannot afford to have a shortage of lawyers, especially in the field of oil, gas and energy.
The Legal Affairs Minister noted that construction of the law school could begin as soon as permission is obtained from the CLE. The initiative is joint venture between government and other stakeholders— the Government provides the land and the construction cost which is estimated at US $6M is expected to come through funding from regional stakeholders.
Meanwhile, the feasibility study for the establishment of the JOF Haynes Law School in Guyana will be a major focus of the Executive meetings of the Council for Legal Education (CLE) to be hosted later this week at the Marriott Hotel, Kingston, Georgetown.
In January 2017, the Attorney General signed the historic Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the University of the Caribbean (UCC) and Law College of the Americas (LCA) for the establishment of the JOF Haynes Law School.
The Attorney General during the Executive meetings of CLE last year in Jamaica was part of the process aimed at furthering the programme to sensitize the Jamaican public on the establishment of the law school in Guyana.
AG Williams said the positive development is expected to significantly reduce the cost, particularly to Guyanese, to continue with their law studies while attracting other students from across the Caribbean.
The CLE meeting will be held here from September 6-8.
President David Granger and Attorney General will address the opening as representatives of the host country.
Sixty participants have, thus far, confirmed attendance at the meeting, among them Chairman of the CLE, a representative of the Caribbean Court of Justice, Attorneys General, members of the Bar Association, representatives of the Hugh Wooding Law School, as well as Principals of the three Law Schools located in Trinidad and Tobago, Jamaica and the Bahamas.
The event, which is being hosted here for the fifth time, is a collaboration between the Government of Guyana and the CLE.
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