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The Katsina State House of Assembly, on Tuesday passed a law that prescribed life imprisonment for those found guilty of rape.
The assembly, which amended Section 283 of Katsina State Penal Code Law, Cap 96 of 1991, also provided 14-year jail term and a N50,000 fine for those with lesser offence.
The sponsor of the bill, Alhaji Rabiu Idris from Funtua Local Government, had earlier said that the amendment was to ensure that rapists received severe punishment to serve as deterrent to others.
Idris said the measure became necessary in view of rampant cases of rape in the state.
He observed that judges were constrained in handing over severe sentences as the offence was not specified in law.
The new amendment now reads: “Whoever commits rape, shall serve life imprisonment or lesser charge of not less than 14 years in jail together with N50,000 fine.”
The law also requires the offender to pay compensation to the victim.
The Speaker, Alhaji Ya’u Gwajogwajo, directed the legal department of the house to prepare a clean copy of the law and forward it to the state governor for assent.
It would be recalled that the house had recently passed another law, which was signed by the governor, prohibiting homosexuality, lesbianism and sexual harassment in the state.
The law prescribed 14 years imprisonment on conviction and N10,000 liable for offenders.