Directing Law School Students to Submit Social Media Handles for Monitoring an Infringement on Their Constitutional Rights to Free Expression

Rockson Dafeamekpor E X
Rockson Dafeamekpor E X

The directive/demand/request by Director of the Ghana School of Law, Lawyer Yaw Oppong, to the Ghana School of Law students to submit their social media handles to be monitored is tantamount to media censorship and gagging the students.

The directive is most unconstitutional and unacceptable. It must not be countenanced in any manner or form in a 2022 Ghana.

The Constitution 1992, frowns on any such conduct or attempt to restrict and for that matter, gag Law School students from the free expression of their views.

Article 21(1) (a) and (b) of the Constitution 1992, states as follows:

“All persons shall have the right to –
(a) Freedom of speech and expression, which shall include freedom of the press and other media;
(b) Freedom of thought, conscience and belief, which shall include academic freedom”.

Social media has come to provide a legitimate platform for ordinary citizens to have access to media and a medium for the expression of their views emanating from their conscience and beliefs without any hindrance.

As a result, any effort(s) aimed at taking that freedom of expression and conscience for fear of being victimized is something the Constitution frowns upon and same must not be allowed to be perpetrated on would-be lawyers.

It must again be reiterated that these conducts and directives are emanating from the manner through which these students were admitted into the Law School. It can be recalled that these students were compelled in their recent entrance examination, to sign off their rights to challenge results even when they feel the need to challenge same.

Unfortunately, these incidents are gradually providing power to the administrators of legal education to keep chipping off the rights that are available to would-be officers and practitioners of the law.

We must therefore be worried at any efforts directed at taking further the rights of Law School students. Any such efforts must be resisted, condemned, and pointed out as such.

The directive/demand/request to Law School students must therefore be withdrawn as same constitutes violation of the rights of these students as enshrined in the Constitution, 1992.

*Rockson-Nelson EK. Dafeamekpor Esq.
MP, South Dayi
Member, Constitutional, Legal and Subsidiary Legislation, Parliament of Ghana

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