A bill prescribing a five-year jail term for unlawful protesters in Nigeria has been approved for a second reading at the House of Representatives on Thursday.
The bill which was sponsored by Rep. Emeka Chinedu Martins (PDP-Imo), seeks to amend the Criminal Code Act, Cap 38, Laws of the Federation of Nigeria, 2004 “to further preserve the sanctity of human life and property, and to provide specifically for the crime of mob action, prescribe punishment and other matters.”
The bill proposes to punish individuals who participate in unlawful assembly, riot, and mob action.
“When an unlawful assembly has begun to act in so tumultuous a manner as to disturb the peace, the assembly is called a riot, and the persons assembled are said to be riotously assembled.
“When an unlawful assembly becomes violent as to commit unlawful acts against any person or property, the assembly is called a mob, and their violent act is referred to as mob action”.
The bill also stated that whoever participates in a riot is guilty of a felony and is liable to imprisonment for three years, while mob action is five years imprisonment.