Port Harcourt – Gov. Nyesom Wike of Rivers has declared that Government will amend the State Anti-kidnapping Law to prescribe death sentence for those involved in cultism, robbery and kidnapping.
Wike made this known during a broadcast in Port Harcourt following the killing of Johnson Igwedibia, popularly known as Don Waney by the security forces on Saturday.
He said the three arms of government would work together to amend the state Anti Kidnapping Law to proscribe death penalty to violent crimes.
“Rivers government has invested heavily on the security of the state and will continue to do everything within our powers to guarantee the security and safety of lives and properties.
“As a fact, we will spare no cost in ensuring that nobody will have peace if the lives and properties of our people make no meaning to them.
“We reiterate our zero tolerance for all forms of criminality and reassure residents of our determination to be though with those who undermine peace and security in the state.
“To underscore our seriousness to fight violent crime, we shall be amending the Anti Kidnapping Law to proscribe the maximum death sentence for engaging in cultism, robbery and kidnapping,” he said.
Wike said the decision of the state government to offer amnesty to all repentant cultists, militants and criminals was done in good faith and in the best interest of the state.
He said the full weight of the law shall be discharged on anyone who failed to genuinely renounce all forms of criminality as stated in the terms of the amnesty deal.
The governor said the state government would pay N20 million each to any individual who volunteers useful information that would lead to arrest and prosecution of 32 wanted criminals in the state.
“The aftermath of crime and insecurity affect society as a whole, and not only the direct victims that are affected.
“The duty to fight crime remains collective and no right thinking person should ever indulge in politicizing security issues under any circumstances,” he warned.
Wike directed security agencies to immediately arrest and prosecute 32 alleged criminals (names withheld) who he said had either reneged on the terms of the amnesty or refused to embrace it.
He thanked President Muhammadu Buhari for sending a delegation led by Minister of Interior, Gen. Abdulrahman Danbazzau, to Rivers to assess the security situation in the state and to commiserate with the government and people over the killings
Wike also commended the Nigerian Army and Department of State Security for bringing the alleged killer Don Waney and his gang to book.