Nigeria Senate today has made a bill seeking to prohibit the payment and receipt of ransom for the release of any person kidnapped, imprisoned or wrongfully confined in the country was on Wednesday considered by the Nigerian senate.
The bill which was titled Terrorism Prevention (Amendment) Bill, 202 was read in the plenary session today May 19th
It stipulates a 15-year jail sentenced for anyone found guilty of such action is being sponsored by Senator Ezenwa Francis Onyewuchi and it scaled seeking to prohibit the payment and receipt of ransom for the release of any person kidnapped, imprisoned or wrongfully confined it on Wednesday May 19 considered by the Nigerian senate.
Onyewuchi who raised an alarm of kidnapping becoming a lucrative business in the country, said the bill essentially seeks to substitute for section 14 of the Principal Act a new section to read: “Anyone who transfers funds, makes payment or colludes with an abductor, kidnapper or terrorist to receive any ransom for the release of any person who has been wrongfully confined, imprisoned or kidnapped is guilty of a felony and is liable on conviction to a term of imprisonment of not less than 15 years.”
“Kidnapping is on the increase in Nigeria and it is prevalent across all the geopolitical zones.
“Some blame the rise of this criminal activity on poverty, religion, politics, deficiency of existing laws, unemployment, connivance of security agents, corruption, and greed among others.
“Our unemployed youths are also turning out to kidnapping to get money (ransom) as a survival strategy.
“Whatever the reason, it is most obvious that kidnapping in Nigeria puts everyone at risk, the rich and the poor, old and young, male and female, foreigner or indigene, expatriate or non-expatriate, traditional rulers and religious leaders, among others”
The Bill which has been referred to the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters for further legislative work after scaling second reading also Pointing out that countries like USA and the United Kingdom do not support payment of ransoms to kidnappers
“Payments of terrorist ransoms is illegal under the UK Terrorism Act 2000 while the USA adheres to a strict No-Concessions policy on the payment of ransom.
“The continuous payment of ransom must not be encouraged, in addition government should provide adequate security and strengthen the economy as a matter of urgency, accelerate its poverty alleviation programs, provide employment opportunities targeting youths who are mostly involved in abductions and kidnappings, strengthen our law enforcement agencies, and provide the necessary support to end the menace of kidnapping.”