She said the adversarial litigation system practised in the country and other common law jurisdictions, has led many unwise practitioners to think that obnoxious conduct is the mark of the smart lawyer.
Mrs Wood was speaking at the enrolment and call to the bar of 38 lawyers, comprising 12 females and 26 males in Accra.
She said as members of the learned profession, the primary responsibility lie in helping to shape the future direction of the country’s jurisprudence, the bar and indeed society at large.
“Achieving professional excellence is therefore predicated upon hard work, commitment and dedication,” she said.
The chief Justice emphasised that the legal practitioners being first and foremost officers of the court have the primary duty of assisting in the proper administration of justice.
She said it is, therefore, imperative that lawyers remain true to the core values and ideals of the profession, with deep commitment to rule of law in a free and open society.
Mrs Wood said indubitably, integrity is the key to success in any human enterprise but in the contemporary world, for many, integrity is difficult to uphold when the benefits of dishonesty are often so immediate, so immense and so alluring.
She said the dividends of integrity are slow in coming and sometimes difficult to see, yet that price is worth every sweat, every sacrifice and every deprivation of personal comfort and advantage.
“I, however, counsel you to make integrity your hallmark and in all things seek to further the cause of justice, uphold the highest ethical standards of professional conduct,” she added.
She said the skills the new lawyers have acquired are intended to make them honest and diligent and not otherwise.