Judicial Committee of the Parliament has revised the Legal Profession Bill to empower the Bar Council to impose penalties on State prosecutors and attorneys.
The bill, with this key revision, was passed by the committee this Tuesday.
The original bill establishes that the Bar Council will not have any jurisdiction over prosecutors who work at the Prosecutor General’s Office and attorneys who work at the Attorney General’s Office.
The clause was a point of focus by several parliamentarians during the preliminary debate on the bill. They argued that the lack of jurisdiction over State prosecutors and attorneys was a license to violate the code of conduct for lawyers.
The decision by the Judicial Committee to remove the clause means the Bar Council, if the bill passes, will have jurisdiction to penalize both State and private lawyers for violations.
The bill, with this key revision, was passed by the committee with the unanimous consensus of all seven members who attended the meeting.
The Parliament is scheduled to vote on the bill later this afternoon.
Once the Legal Profession Bill passes and comes into effect, all decisions regarding lawyers, including issuance of licenses, will fall within the mandate of the Bar Council.