Senate passes conferment bill to tackle kidnapping in Nigeria

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Senate

The Senate on Monday passed the Conferment bill which seeks to prescribe punishment for the offenses of abduction, wrongful restraint and wrongful conferment for ransom.

This bill which seeks to combat and prevent any form of kidnapping in Nigeria passed its third reading on the floor of the Senate after a report by the Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights and Legal Matters Chaired by Senator David Umaru.

The bill which was sponsored by Senator Isa Misau representing Bauchi Central went for first reading on the 17th of May, 2016, second reading on the 5th of October, 2016 and was referred to the Senator Umaru-led Committee.

With the passage of the Conferment Bill, whoever, with intent to hold any person for ransom, abducts or wrongfully restraints or wrongfully confines such a person shall be guilty of an offense and shall be punished on conviction with imprisonment without an option of fine.

According to the Senate, whoever is guilty of the offense which resulted in serious injury to the abducted victim shall be punished on conviction with life imprisonment without an option of fine.

Also whoever is guilty of the offense which resulted in the death of the victim, shall be punished and on conviction be sentenced to death.

Similarly, whoever conspires to commit the offense is guilty of an offense and shall be punished on conviction with life imprisonment.

Below are the general provisions of the bill.

General provisions of the Bill:

1. Abduction, Wrongful Restraint, Bodily Harm.

2. Receipt of Ransom.

3. Negotiation for Ransom.

4. Power to Freeze Bank Account.

5. Order to Authorize Inspection.

6. Information.

7. Duty to Inform the Police.
8. Power to intercept Communications.

9. Evidence of Accomplice.

10. Evidence of Pecuniary Resources Property.

11. Protection of Informers.

12. Prosecution of Offences.

13. Repeal of 364 of the Criminal Code.

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