Law school does not administer bar exams, says PLO Lumumba

PLO Lumumba. Photo: Andrew Kilonzi

Kenya School of Law (KSL) has dismissed reports that it is failing in its mandate, leading to poor performance by students.

In a statement, KSL Chief Executive Officer PLO Lumumba said the institution only trains persons to be advocates.

“The school has undertaken this seriously through a rigorous training programme with a set curriculum, academic timetable, delivered by lecturers who are lead practitioners in academia and the bar and bench,” said Prof Lumumba.

He said since 2015 administering of the Bar Examinations has been vested in the Council of Legal Education (CLE).

Lumumba cited section 8 (1) (f) of the Legal Education Act to affirm that the KSL has no role in examinations. “The bar examinations are prescribed by CLE under section 13 of the Advocates Act cap 16, and not KSL examinations,” he said.

Lumumba was reacting to a story published by the Saturday Standard — which revealed the massive failure by law students who undertake the bar examinations.

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He explained that all examinations at the KSL and at the Council are administered and marked professionally.

“The students sit nine bar examination papers at their first sitting, this does not account for those who only fail a portion of the papers.”

Lumumba further dismissed reports that the mass failure rate is a conduit to generate money for the institution.

He said the claim “misrepresents the activities of the school and makes it look like the school conducts the examinations and has deliberate conspiracy to fail students in order to financially profit.”

CLE Chief Executive Officer Kulundu Bitonye confirmed that last year’s examinations posted the worst results and blamed this on inadequate teaching facilities.

He disclosed that of the 2,000 law students who sat the bar examinations last year–on first attempt– only 180 passed. 

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