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A bill by the Nigerian Senate criminalizing the payment of ransoms to kidnappers passed its third reading in the Senate today April 27.

The criminalization by the lawmakers followed the receipt and consideration of a report by the Senate Committee on Judiciary, Human Rights, and Legal Matters on the bill titled Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2013 (Amendment) Bill, 2022.

Senator Opeyemi Bamidele, who chairs the committee, had moved that the lawmakers receive the report after which he presented it for consideration. The lawmakers resolved into the committee of the whole to consider the report, clause by clause and reverted to plenary to report progress.

This led to the reading of the Terrorism (Prevention) Act 2013 (Amendment) Bill, 2022 for the third time and its subsequent passage.

In his remarks, the Senate President, Ahmad Lawan, congratulated his colleagues on the passage of the bill which he said was very important.

“It is believed here in the Senate that this bill, by the time it is signed into Act by Mr. President, will enhance the efforts of this government in the fight against terrorism, kidnapping, and other associated vices.

This is one piece of legislation that can turn around not only the security issues of Nigeria but even the economy of the country. I believe that the Executive will waste no time in signing this bill into law and we hope that this additional piece of legislation will achieve the purpose for which it has been worked upon.” Lawan said

According to Lawan, the fight against insecurity is not the sole purpose of a government and the contributions and support of the citizens are essential. He explained that this was because the security agencies need critical information to tackle terrorism, kidnapping, and other threats to the nation’s security.

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