A progressive Bill, The Terrorism Prevention Amendment Bill 2021 has successfully scaled through its second reading at the Nigerian Senate. The Bill was proposed to amend the existing law against terrorism which is the Terrorism Prevention Act 2013.
The aim of the Bill if eventually passed into law, is to put an end to the evil culture of kidnappings, terrorism and the unlawful act of demanding ransom from the families of the kidnapped. The import of the Bill is to amend the Terrorism Prevention Act 2013 which will outlaw the payment of ransom to kidnappers and terrorists in exchange for the release of any wrongfully confined or kidnapped person.
Furthermore, the proposed new law will also stipulate that any person who pays or transfers funds to kidnappers or terrorists will be guilty of a felony and liable to prison time of not less than 15 years.
Senator Ezenwa Francis Onyewuchi, in advocating for the Bill strongly condemned the onslaught of kidnappings in the country. He added that “it has now become the most virulent form of banditry in Nigeria and the most pervasive and intractable violent crime in the country.”
However, with the eventual passing of the Bill into law, the senator hopes that the country will begin to see a significant decline in the volume of kidnappings and banditry.