IGP Idris says that the punishment for kidnapping across Nigeria should be made tougher – The police chief says creating special courts to try the crime should be greatly considered – Idris wants other states to join Anambra, Bauchi, Lagos and Kano, who already have strong anti-kidnapping law in place Inspector-General of police (IGP) Ibrahim Idris has said it is high time Nigeria gets tough with punishments for kidnappers.
The Nigeria Police chief wants the punishment for kidnapping to be either of death or life imprisonment. According to The Cable, Idris made this comment while discussing about arrested billionaire kidnapper Chukwudidumeme Onuamadike aka Evans in a recent meeting with civil society organisations in Abuja.
The police chief wants the death penalty for kidnapping to be approved federally as it has already been done in states like Anambra, Bauchi, Lagos and Kano.
Idris said: “We should start looking at punishment and the possibility of establishing special courts to address issues of kidnapping. “On daily basis, we arrest hundreds of suspects. We should look for a way to review our laws and impose sanctions like we have in some states like Anambra, Lagos, Kano and Imo.
“Evans has undoubtedly changed the face of kidnapping in this country, if you see his magnificent mansions in Ghana. “That was why he refused to invest in his own state and preferred to build houses in Ghana and other places.
“This was because he knew his investments would be lost. So the issue of punishment is very important. “He told his boys not to have landed property in either Anambra or Imo because he was aware the houses will be demolished and the boys ostracised if caught.
“He refused to own any property in his place. You know, in that part of the country, even in churches, relatives of kidnap suspects are avoided and treated as outcast by people.
“You can see why our youths have taken this way to easy life. That is why we have to up the risk. If you engage in kidnapping the punishment should be death or life imprisonment.
“We need to review those punishments, we should have a time frame for the conclusion of the trial of suspects”. “This will serve as a deterrent to youths that may wish to engage in the crime.”
The law provides for death penalty for kidnappers whose victims die in their custody, and life imprisonment for the act of kidnapping.