International Consultant to Develop the Legal Education Regulations for the Maldives


Location : Male', MALDIVES
Application Deadline :20-Mar-21 (Midnight New York, USA)
Type of Contract :Individual Contract
Post Level :International Consultant
Languages Required :
English  
Starting Date :
(date when the selected candidate is expected to start)
04-Apr-2021
Duration of Initial Contract :9 weeks

UNDP is committed to achieving workforce diversity in terms of gender, nationality and culture. Individuals from minority groups, indigenous groups and persons with disabilities are equally encouraged to apply. All applications will be treated with the strictest confidence.

UNDP does not tolerate sexual exploitation and abuse, any kind of harassment, including sexual harassment, and discrimination. All selected candidates will, therefore, undergo rigorous reference and background checks.


Background

The Legal Professions Act (Law no: 5/2019) mandates the Bar Council to regulate all matters relating to legal education, bar admission, professional and continuing development of lawyers, regulating professional conduct of lawyers, investigating and taking necessary disciplinary action against lawyers, and taking other necessary measures to develop and enhance the provision of legal services in the Maldives. Since strengthening legal education is key to improving the quality of the legal and justice sector institutions and the services delivered by them, developing the regulations related to legal education in the Maldives has been identified as a key responsibility of the Bar Council of the Maldives. 

In this context, at the end of 2019, the Bar Council of the Maldives with support from the UNDP Maldives, commenced the task of reviewing and establishing minimum standards for legal education in the Maldives.  The Minimum Standard for Qualifying Law Degrees have since been adopted and is in effect as at Jan 1, 2021. As a continuation of the same project with support from UNDP, minimum standards will also be developed for all law courses offered at various levels at universities and colleges in the Maldives. This will include all undergraduate and post-graduate programs to be offered at the law schools.

As the third stage in the process, the Bar Council aims to develop the very first regulations on legal education for the Maldives and will review and draft regulations on law school accreditation, program approval/ validation/ accreditation, law school monitoring, and propose other provisions in line with international best standards, to enhance and establish standards for legal education in the Maldives.

In view of the above, UNDP under its Integrated Governance Programme (IGP) with the Bar Council of Maldives is seeking the support of an international consultant to develop the regulation on legal education.


Duties and Responsibilities

Scope of Work 

Under the guidance of the Bar Council and UNDP, the consultant will develop the regulation on legal education for the Maldives/ The tasks to be undertaken by the consultant under the Terms of Reference include, but are not necessarily limited to, the following; 

  1. Conduct a desk review of existing law curricula and relevant accreditation programmes and guidelines used in the Maldives, and submit an inception report outlining recommendations in line with international norms, standards and best practices;
  2. Organize and conduct consultation meetings with relevant stakeholders including but not limited to relevant government institutions, judiciary, lawyers, academia and civil society organizations to better understand the needs of the institutions and any existing or envisaged challenges;
  3. Based on the consultation meetings, the review of suggested policy recommendations, policy papers, policy directives from Bar Council and based on the inception report, draft the Legal Education Regulation, as provided under the Legal Professions Act, and propose special procedures to be followed when granting approvals and accreditation and conducting monitoring visits to law teaching institutions;
  4. Conduct a validation workshop/ final consultative meeting with the relevant stakeholders to validate the proposed draft regulation ;
  5. In collaboration with BCM, identify the implications of the proposed regulation on legal education and on key institutions and stakeholders, and recommend ways forward by proposing a roadmap for implementing the regulation.

Expected Outputs and Deliverables

All documents shall be submitted as stipulated below and all documents will be submitted as drafts and upon review by the UNDP and the Bar Council, the consultant shall revise the draft regulation and reports. Once, the revised drafts are accepted by the Bar Council and the UNDP, they will be termed as final drafts by the consultancy.

The consultant will be responsible for the following deliverables;

 

  • Inception Report: The inception report shall include a summary of regulations and policies that currently exist in relation to the Legal Education and accreditation in the Maldives. It should also reflect the proposed policy options for the regulation, and a clear timeline for the drafting of the regulation.
  • Drafting of regulation: The drafts of the regulation should be completed as per the timeline identified in the inception report. The consultant should conduct relevant consultations and develop the regulations for legal education, inclusive of law school accreditation, program and institution approval, and all other criteria, to enhance and establish standards for legal education in the Maldives. The drafts will be written in English and in a format and style to be approved by the Bar Council.
  • Final consultation meeting and the final draft of the regulation: The consultant shall facilitate a validation workshop for relevant stakeholders on the regulation, incorporate any necessary changes and reviews identified in the consultation workshop. Final draft should be thoroughly vetted by obtaining feedback from stakeholders before it is submitted to the Bar Council and UNDP.
  • Roadmap: The implementation plan should identify roles and responsibilities for roll-out, and the impacts of the regulation on stakeholders and make recommendations on mitigation measures. The document should be prepared in English and submitted to Bar Council and UNDP.

The following table shows an indication of the duration for the deliverables;

 

Deliverables/ Outputs

Estimated Duration to Complete

Final inception report

12 days

Draft regulation (including consultations)

30 days

Final Consultation meeting and final draft of the regulation

10 days

Roadmap

5 days

  

 

Institutional Arrangement

The consultant is expected to work with the Bar Council. The consultant will be accountable to the Programme Office of IGP, for each deliverable as stipulated in the proposal. Fortnightly meetings will be held with the ARR and the Bar Council focal point. A briefing and debriefing meeting will be organized with UNDP senior management at the beginning and end of assignment.

Duration of the Work

This assignment will approximately take 9 weeks and is expected to start in late March/Eearly April 2021. The consultant should come up with a clear timeline while submitting the proposal taking into consideration the estimated time durations for each deliverable as stipulated above.


Competencies

Corporate Competencies

  • Demonstrates integrity by modelling the UN’s values and ethical standards and acts in accordance with the Standards of Conduct for international civil servants;
  • Advocates and promotes the vision, mission, and strategic goals of UNDP;
  • Displays cultural, gender, religion, race, nationality and age sensitivity and adaptability;
  • Treats all people fairly without favouritism.

Functional Competencies

  • Knowledge about the UNDP programmes would be an advantage;
  • Proven strong analytical abilities;
  • Ability to work under pressure with several tasks and various deadlines;
  • Ability to actively generate creative, practical approaches and solutions to overcome challenging situations;
  • Excellent writing, presentation/public speaking skills;
  • A pro-active approach to problem-solving;
  • General IT Literacy


Required Skills and Experience

 

The consultant is expected to fulfill the following criteria in terms of the expertise and qualifications;

  • A minimum of a masters or a bachelor’s degree in law, or other relevant field that supports the development of drafting legal education regulations/rules;
  • A minimum of 10 years of professional experience working as a law professor;
  • A minimum of 10 years of professional experience in the justice sector or as a litigator;
  • A minimum of 5 years of experience in drafting of regulations or development of similar documents;
  • Experience in the region or similar context is an added asset; and
  • Fluency in written and spoken English is required.

 

Recommended documents;

Interested candidates should submit;

  • A letter of interest
  • Detailed CV and completed P11 form
  • Previous similar works undertaken by the consultant
  • Financial proposal

Schedule of payment: The consultant will be paid in installments as per the deliverables.  

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