President Truong Tan Sang has urged the Vietnam Bar Federation (VBF), a socio-professional organisation representing the will and legitimate interests of lawyers nationwide, to continue playing its role as a bridge between the Party, State and its members.

The Party and State are willing to offer all possible support for the VBF to fulfill its tasks, he told the second National Congress of Lawyers for the 2014-2019 tenure in Hanoi on April 18, with government officials and 390 delegates representing over 9,000 lawyers nationwide taking part.

Specifically, he called for ideas about modifying any flaw in legal regulations or mechanisms, making it easier for lawyers to better do their job.

At his request, the VBF must work closely with State management agencies and consolidate its apparatus from the grassroots to central level.

On professional training, the leader asked each lawyer to hone skills to be capable of dealing with international lawsuits.

Aside from the past achievements, he also pointed out shortcomings that need to be fixed during this tenure, admitting that the rate of lawyers remains low in the world rankings and their competence has yet to meet demand while several localities fail to watch over lawyer activities.

At the end of his speech, the President called on the congress to elect qualified and experienced staff to the VBF Standing Committee and the National Lawyers’ Council - the highest body operating during the interval between the two congresses.

During this tenure, the VBF sets to develop a pool of lawyers qualified in ethics and professional skills, especially in mountainous and poor regions.

It will also intensify the observance of professional ethics and conduct, improve the quality of legal practices and raise public awareness of their role and position in the society.

Since May 2009, lawyers across the country have handled nearly 77, 130 criminal and 65,200 civil cases, provided legal counseling and free assistance services for more than 272,300 and 37,800 other cases, respectively.

The VBF was established on January 16, 2008 under the Prime Minister’s decision, assembling 63 provincial and municipal bar associations nationwide.

During its first tenure from 2009 to 2014, the VBF has proactively participated in lawmaking, education and dissemination, legal aid provision as well as other social movements launched by the Party, State and Vietnam Fatherland Front, thus enhancing its position and image among the public.-VNA