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KOGI STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY, LOKOJA A BILL FOR A LAW TO PROVIDE FOR THE ELIMINATION OF VIOLENCE IN PRIVATE AND PUBLIC LIFE, PROHIBITION OF ALL FORMS OF VIOLENCE AGAINST PERSONS, PROTECTION OF VICTIMS AND PUNISHMENT OF OFFENDERS, AND OTHER MATTERS CONNECTED THEREWITH, 2020. SECOND READING …

Rt. Hon. Speaker and distinguished Hon. Members; permit me to lead the debate on the general principles of the Bill proposing a legislative enactment for the provision of the Kogi State Violence against Persons (Prohibition) Law, 2020. For brevity, the purpose of this proposed legislation is to eliminate violence in our private and public lives, to prohibit all forms of violence against persons and to provide maximum protection and effective remedies for the victims and punishment to the offenders.
The Rt. Hon. Speaker and distinguished Hon. Members; you would recall that this Bill was, on the 3rd day of December last year, introduced before this august Assembly and subsequently read for the first time by the Clerk of the House.
The Bill is a Private Member Bill sponsored by my humble self on behalf of the Challenged Parenthood Initiative with support from sister Civil Society Organisations in Kogi State. I have the honour, accordingly, to lead the debate in support of the bill given the basic fact that violence is today a major catastrophe in our society and that the need to eliminate such tragedy in our lives as well as the need to protect the victim(s) where such violence occurred, should be uppermost reasons and, therefore, the basis for our consideration of this proposed legislation.
Violence takes away peace and safety from our homes and the society at large. Physical violence; sexual violence, intimidation, rape, riots, coercing, restraining, grabbing, stalking or cyber stalking are, on the one part, instances of physical attacks against the other or targeted person(s). Psychological violence, on the other part, is used by the offenders as a means of instilling fears in the victims through threatening behaviours, such as damaging property, monitoring victim’s activities, et cetera.
The proposed legislation is the curbing instrument that would not only specify such behavioural offences constituting violence but providing commensurate punishment thereto as well as vesting both the inferior and superior Courts of our land with jurisdictions to try cases relating to violence accordingly. If considered and enacted, the Law will guarantee an improvement in both our private and public lives, and will make certain that our society would be a decent society, free from violence and insecurity. (On a lighter mood, Mr Speaker, cases of wives beating up their husbands because of sidekick or side-chick would be eliminated as this Law will protect us.)
The Rt. Hon. Speaker and my distinguished Hon. Colleagues, the Bill is structured into 9 Parts and arranged in Sections from 1 to 46 and a schedule thereto. Part 1, Sections 1 to 26 of the Bill provide for the offences and punishments for the offenders having clearly and explicitly stated what constitute the offences which among others include:
Rape
Stalking
Cyber stalking
Forceful ejection from home
Political violence
Riot
Deprivation
Destruction of property
Forced financial dependent
Emotional/verbal/psychological abuse
Spousal battery
Harmful traditional practices
Harmful widowhood practices
Drug abuse, and
Violence by state actors
Part 2, Sections 27 to 38 detail the jurisdictions of the Courts, the administration of the violent cases, protection of victims and right of the victims.
Violence against persons (prohibition) law, proposed for enactment by this august Assembly, is to domesticate similar law on violence against person enacted by the National Assembly but with specific reference to offences earlier mentioned. An interesting dimension to sexual offence, in this proposed law, is a successful attempt to address contemporary issues regarding sexual offences. While the Kogi State Penal Code, 2019, passed and assented to just last year, gives no possibility for a man to be raped, this bill has taken care of that lacuna in just simple and clear term, “a person commits the offence of rape if HE or SHE intentionally penetrates the VAGINA, ANUS or MOUTH of another person with any other part of HIS or HER body or anything else”. And so are other instances that my limited time would not permit me to cite.
The Rt. Hon. Speaker and my distinguished Hon. Colleagues, violence begins at home and extends to the society at large. A child that experiences violence as daily occurrences at home would grow up being a violent person, and extends the violent character to the larger society. Violence has negative effects on the psychological health and mental life as well as the sexual disposition of the victims. It alienates the victims and makes them strangers in their own society.
Permit me, the Rt. Hon. Speaker and my distinguished Hon. Colleagues, to crave your indulgence in giving this Bill your kind consideration and accelerated passage, believing that the citizens of Kogi State would be protected from violence of any form, believing that standards and controls to govern the actions of people and groups in both the public and private spheres would be set by the government when this bill receives your blessings and is transmitted to His Excellency for assent, and believing that this bill, if passed into law, would become the most important instruments of government in organizing the society and protecting the good citizens of our dear State, the Kogi State.
I thank you all for the anticipated support in this legislative attempt to eliminate violence in Kogi State.
Hon. Ibrahim Usman a.k.a. Okadigbo,
Member Representing Adavi State Constituency.
A BILL FOR A LAW TO PROVIDE FOR THE ELIMINATION OF VIOLENCE IN PRIVATE AND PUBLIC LIFE, PROHIBITION OF ALL FORMS OF VIOLENCE AGAINST PERSONS, PROTECTION OF VICTIMS AND PUNISHMENT OF OFFENDERS, AND OTHER MATTERS CONNECTED THEREWITH, 2020, *SCALED THROUGH SECOND READING AND TAKEN BY KOGI STATE HOUSE OF ASSEMBLY TODAY*19th February , 2020. Sponsored by the Hon. Chairman House Committee on Women Affairs on behalf of Challenged Parenthood Initiative (CPI)


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