In the broader interest of universities, this state of affairs of not giving sufficient importance to the establishment of and provision for a Legal Advisor’s Office must be changed.
- Each IPTA must set up a separate unit to be called “Pejabat Penasihat Undang-Undang Universiti”.
- The Unit must be headed by a Penasihat Undang-Undang Universiti who shall be the thief legal officer of the University. A proposed organizational chart for the Pejabat Penasihat Undang-Undang is shown in Appendix 1.
- After consultation with the JPA, the Penasihat Undang-Undang must be emplaced on a sufficiently high salary scale that recognizes the critical function of the office and is commensurate with the work load and responsibilities of the university’s chief legal officer.
- The Penasihat Undang-Undang should enjoy operational independence in his professional function but must be answerable, in the performance of his/her functions, to the Naib Canselor.
- Each University must allocate sufficient and separate funds for the Pejabat Penasihat Undang-Undang (PPUU).
- Sufficient number of legal and non-legal staff should be allocated to the PPUU.
- The appointment of the Penasihat Undang-Undang can be accomplished administratively. It is preferable, however, for each Lembaga Pengarah to act under the Universities and University Colleges Act 1971 (Act 30), First Schedule, sections 11, 12(1) and 45(2) to make this appointment. At UiTM the creation of the office can be achieved under sections 22A and 23 of the Universiti Teknologi MARA Act 1976. (Act 173). At UIAM, the University’s Memorandum or Articles may be employed to create the administrative unit of the Pejabat Penasihat Undang-Undang.
- The duties, powers and functions of the Penasihat Undang-Undang may be determined administratively or may be prescribed by the statue of the University (Act 30, First Schedule, section 12(2), and 27(2). The section below outlines some proposed functions of the Penasihat Undang-Undang and his/her unit.
- Except as may be prescribe by any statue of the University, the term if office of the Legal Advisor shall be three years (Act 30, First Schedule, section 23).
- The Legal Advisor’s of all IPTAs should be joined together in a common association to be reffered to as the Majlis Penasihat Undang-Undang Institusi Pengajian Tinggi Awam. The Majlis can be established in two ways:-
- as a society under the Societies Act, or;
- by way of administrative prerogative of the Mesyuarat Jawatankuasa Naib-Naib Canselor/Rektor (JKNC/R)
In view of the Resolution of the JKNC/R of the 11th March 2005, to support the establishment of such a Majlis, the second method (the administrative technique) should be pursued.