Several Ugandans have called for investigation into circumstances which led to hundreds of students to fail the Law Development Centre (LDC) bar course.
According to the results that were released this week, 90.1 percent of the 1474 students who sat for the exam failed.
Only 145 students making up for 9 percent of the total students passed the bar course.
Ugandans now want investigations into the matter.
Richard Anguria, a lawyer said that there is a need for some investigations because nothing can justify a 90 percent failure rate.
He said that his short stint at the LDC was enough to prove to him that there could be some malice at the institution.
“One thing I saw in a short time as an external examiner is that, it is not correct for practising lawyers to teach and examine the students. One time, an examiner stated; the students should not just pass! It’s at that point I left the examining, there is malice in that institution,” Auguria noted.
Human Rights lawyer, Nicholas Opiyo however said that the failure rate could be explained by the online lectures that were conducted in the aftermath of Covid-19 outbreak.
“These lot studied primarily online. I think it is an indictment of the online instruction model other one of the integrity of LDC,” Opiyo said.
Adding; “Other than the focus of finding blame, we must focus on finding solutions to the problem. I suggest a few -reinstate presenter exam to sort the chuff (they’re many)-infuse an extended pupilage system to complement institution based instruction -make the bar course a 2 year training.”
In August last year, the Law Council scrapped off pre-entry examinations for the bar course at LDC, pending conclusion of final legal procedures.
LDC director Frank Othembi said that this might have had a hand in the failure rate because the students admitted were not up to standard.
“Remember that this is the first group of bar course students (that were) admitted without undergoing pre-entry examination. A number of them were unable to cope with the academic demands of the course,” Othembi said.
This is however not the first time that students at the LDC fail at such rates. In the 2012/13 academic year for example, out of the 358 students who wrote the exam, only 64 passed the bar course.
Other students now want LDC’s monopoly over training lawyers enrolling as high court advocates to be dismantled.
The current arrangement requires every law graduate from all the accredited universities in the country to enroll for an eight month training at LDC, if the wish to continue as advocates in Uganda.