©New Straits Times
(Used by permission)
KUALA LUMPUR: The Certificate of Legal Practice, which all aspiring lawyers have to sit to qualify for practice in Malaysia, will be abolished.
It would be replaced by the Common Bar Course (CBC),
announced Minister in The Prime Minister's Department Datuk Zaid Ibrahim.
CLP is a compulsory requirement for Bachelor of Law graduates conferred by universities in England, Wales and Northern Ireland and certain universities in Australia and New Zealand before they can practice law.
The examination is conducted once a year and candidates are examined on the general aspects of law, civil procedure, criminal procedure, evidence and professional practice.
Zaid said complaints have been made in the past about the varying standards and level of competency among graduates entering the legal profession.
He said a common evaluation system was needed "to avoid
disparity among those entering the profession".
"We want to standardise the point of entry and elevate the standard of the legal profession in the country."
He said detailed studies on the new course had already been conducted and the ministry was in the final stages of compiling a report that would be completed in two months.
However, details on the course content or timeframe for the implementation have yet to be determined.
"We are also taking into consideration views from various agencies of the legal fraternity like the Attorney–General's Chambers, Bar Council and Legal Profession Qualifiying Board."
Zaid said it was part of the government's efforts to improve legal expertise, qualifications and standards and the administration of justice.
He added that the CBC would be managed by a non–profit organisation supported by the government.
The organisation would also work closely with the Bar Council and universities on the content of the course.
Zaid also said the government was looking into introducing a Bar Vocational Course and whether such a model, practised in the United Kingdom, could be implemented locally.