Mr Onueze Okocha
By Tobi Soniyi
The body regulating legal education in the country, the Council of Legal Education, Tuesday said the National Open University of Nigeria (NOUN) had not been accredited to run law degree programme.
Speaking in Abuja at a briefing to commence the 50 years anniversary of the Nigerian Law School, the Chairman of the Council, Mr Onueze Okocha, said anyone who studied law at NOUN and hoping to secure admission to the Nigerian Law School was merely wasting his time and resources.
He explained that NOUN did not have the necessary pre requisites such as moot court, lecturers among others to run a degree in law.
He advised those already studying law at NOUN to transfer to accredited universities.
He said: “It is a foolhardy for someone to establish a university, put in his money and then choose to run an illegal faculty of law.”
Okocha said the Council of Legal Education operated under law and therefore would continue to implement the law.
He also dismissed claims that the council might eventually accredit the law programme being run by non-accredited universities.
He said: “I don’t want them to waste their monies and time. They should seek transfer to accredited universities.”
Also speaking, the Director General of the Nigerian Law School, Dr. Tahir Mamman, said anyone who only wanted to have an acquitance with the law, could go to a non-accredited university to study law.
He said: “But if they want to become legal practitioners, they have to go to accredited universities.”
Mamman said the list of universities accredited to run law programme had been published and any one interested should endeavour to look up for it before putting in for law in any of the universities.
Speaking on the proposed amendment of the law establishing the Council of Legal Education, Okocha stated that the amendment would allow the law school to be best administered.
He said: “It must be noted that the proposals, for restructuring and re-organisation of the Council of Legal Education and the Nigerian Law School, are geared towards improving the content and quality of the Legal Education in Nigeria, and ensure that the legal practitioners produced by the Nigerian Law School are duly equipped with requisite character and learning, so that they may be better enabled to discharge their duties and responsibilities in that regard, not just in Nigeria, but throughout the world.”