The Constitutional, Legal and Parliamentary Affairs Committee of Parliament has appealed to the government to address the funding challenges facing the Legal Aid Scheme.
The Vice Chairman of the Committee, Mr. Alexander Abban made the appeal when he was presenting the Committee’s report on the Annual Budget Estimates of the Office of the Attorney-General and Ministry of Justice for the 2018 financial year on the floor of Parliament.
He said the Legal Aid Scheme has had no head office since its establishment. He indicated that it still remains a squatter at the offices of the Council for Law Reporting.
Mr. Abban also intimated that the Scheme currently has only 12 lawyers who deliver legal services to the poor and the vulnerable across the country.
He disclosed that the work of the few lawyers is further hampered by mobility challenges. He added that this is because the Scheme has only two dilapidated vehicles which are used as operational vehicles throughout the country.
He reiterated that since most of the lawyers operate from the regional capitals, the lack of effective means of transport affects the dispensation of legal services to the most needy in the districts.
Parliament has approved the sum of GH₵110,357,163.00 for the activities of the Office of the Attorney-General and Ministry of Justice for the 2018 financial year.
The Legal Aid Scheme was allocated an amount of GH₵7,195,288.00 for its programmes for 2018.