Sierra Leone Law School

Sierra Leone Law School

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Historical Background



When the Law School was established in February 1990, it had no fixed abode.  Fortunately, the then outgoing Dean of the Faculty of Law, Fourah Bay College University of Sierra Leone, Prof. F.C.  Tuboku-Metzger was appointed Director, and so he worked from his office at F.B.C. temporarily.  The new Dean elect Hon. Prof. Justice Dr. H.M. Joko Smart generously allowed the Registrar to temporarily oust him from his office (he used his Chambers in Freetown), and the Finance Office was squeezed in an office on the sixth floor of Kennedy Building.  The School existed on “Seed-money” of One Million Leones only.  The only equipment the School had was one typewriter.  However through the good offices of the British Council, the then British High Commissioner donated a Gestetner machine and some papers to the School.  This was a timely, welcome and priceless gift.  With the location of the School at  “Mount Olympus” (as it was known) with no utility transport, telephone or water, it was necessary to cross the campus to the College Hospital to use the toilet.  There was very little contact with the students who had their lectures in the afternoon. The next location was in the Appeal Court Chambers, or in the Conference Room of the Attorney-General’s Chambers at Guma Building, Lamina Sankoh Street.  As a result it was no surprise that urgent arrangements had to be made to re-house the School.  The situation was made even more urgent when a strike by junior supporting staff of Fourah Bay College made it impossible for even the school borrowed offices to be used, as the doors remained locked!  


It was then after some cajoling, that our supervising Ministry came to the rescue, and four rooms on the Second Floor of Guma Building, were allocated to the Administration, while the students continued to have lectures in the two rooms mentioned above.


As if to add to the teething problems of the School, the fire disaster at the Law Courts Building occurred.  The School’s use of the Appeal Court Room became more limited since extra court sessions were now held there.  Consequently students lost their main source of information, the Judicial Library, which they had been permitted to use.  The School now had only the limited resources of the Law Officer’s Department Library to fall back on.  


After the School called its first set of Students to the Bar...   Continued on page 2





Council of Legal Education Affiliates Sierra Leone-The Country



Between 1987 and 1989, the University of Sierra Leone had produced 30 LLB Hons graduates, most of whom had the desire to pursue the Professional Course leading to the Bar.  It was not till February 1990, however, that their dreams were realized and 26 of these graduates were enrolled as the first set of Sierra Leone Law School Students.



It is to their credit that they worked so hard under the difficult conditions described earlier, and understood that they ought to set a standard that future students would follow. They have  held their own so well in the profession, that even skeptic who wondered whether a LAW SCHOOL would take off in Sierra Leone now acknowledge that indeed the School has taken off, gained height and is well on the way to achieving maximum cruising height and speed!  Of these twenty-six initial graduants, only twenty-two were called to the Bar in December 1990 at a very impressive Call Ceremony held at the City Hall, by kind

permission of the then Chairman, Freetown City Council Committee of Management.  The full list of Barristers so far called to the Bar by the School, appears later on page 81.  Two candidates were referred in one subject each while two failed to satisfy the conditions necessary for a pass.




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