Governor Bello Matawalle on Tuesday signed the anti-banditry and other related offences bill into law, approving the death penalty for bandits.
The law which came into force with immediate effect, has death penalty for convicted bandits and other related criminals in Zamfara.
Speaking shortly after signing the bill, Mr Matawalle said the law formed part of measures to tackle bandits, kidnappers and cattle rustlers in the state.
The law, ‘Prohibition and Punishment for Banditry, Cattle Rustling, Cultism, Kidnapping and Other Incidental Offences, 2022’, was passed by the Zamfara House of Assembly on Monday.
Mr Matawalle said the law was part of his administration’s efforts to address worsening insecurity.
“Today, we have signed the bill on Prohibition and Punishment for Banditry, Cattle Rustling, Cultism, Kidnapping and Other Incidental Offences, 2022,” announced the Zamfara governor.
“You may recall that yesterday (Monday) I inaugurated four security-related committees, as part of our counter-banditry initiatives,” he noted. “Formation of the committees is aimed at ensuring the effective implementation of the security measures being taken to end the over-decade-old banditry and other security-related challenges.”
The governor also stated that he had earlier signed Executive Orders 7, 8,9, and 10, that provided the legal instruments and operational guidelines for the committees.
The new law, according to him, will serve as a legal instrument for prosecuting banditry-related offenders. The law provides that any person found guilty of banditry, kidnapping, cattle rustling, cultism or being an informant to bandits is liable to the death penalty.
The new law also provides that anyone found guilty of aiding and abetting the crimes would be liable to life imprisonment, 20 years’ imprisonment, or 10 years’ imprisonment, without an option of fine.
Mr Matawalle commended the legislature for keeping up with its constitutional responsibility of making laws to secure Zamfara.