14 February 2013

Nigeria: Bayelsa Approves Death Penalty for Kidnappers As Gov. Dickson Signs Bill Into Law

Death penalty now awaits kidnappers in Bayelsa as Gov. Seriake Dickson signed the state's Kidnapping and Allied Offences Bill 2013 into law in Yenagoa on Wednesday.

Mr. Dickson warned that he would not hesitate to sign the death warrant of any person or group of persons who violates the law.

He said, "If you are involved in any act of kidnapping, let me warn you today, don't come near Bayelsa, we have put measures in place.

"If you try that, whether it is in sea-piracy or kidnapping, we are going to get you.

"We will make it difficult for you to succeed and whoever you are and wherever you are operating from, we are going to get you.

"With this bill signed into law, we have entered a new phase in terms of the provision of the legal infrastructure that will support our fight against kidnapping and related offences," he said.

He said he was aware of several arrests made by security agents, adding that most of the young men and women involved in the recent kidnappings in the state were currently in custody.

Mr. Dickson assured that any of the suspects found guilty would be dealt with in accordance with the law.

The Bayelsa governor said that it was morally indefensible for young people, for whatever reason, to go under the cover of darkness, armed with illegal weapons and terrorise homes and villages, abducting old people.

By the new law, the governor said his administration had sent strong condemnation of kidnapping and related crimes in the state.

Mr. Dickson expressed the determination of the state government to work with security agencies to flush out criminals from within the state and wherever they were operating from.


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