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Reps consider bill banning rice importation, life imprisonment for offenders


In the not too long distance future, importation of rice into the country will become a crime just as anyone who commits this crime will live out the rest of their lives in prison.

The House of Representatives is considering passing a bill to this effect, Vanguard is reporting.

The bill, “Provides for the Prohibition of Importation into Nigeria of Rice and the Penalty for the Contravention of the Said Prohibition and other Related Matters”.

The Bill sponsored by Saidu Musa Abdullahi, warns, that “Any person who brings, or causes to be brought, induced any other person to bring or attempts to bring Rice into Nigeria, shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment, as stipulated in section 2 of the Export (Prohibition) Act”.

Section 2 of the Export Prohibition Act, states that:” Any person who takes, causes to be taken, induces any other person to take or attempts to take out of Nigeria any of the goods specified in the Schedule to this Act, shall be guilty of an offence and liable on conviction to imprisonment for life”.

The Bill also states that “(2) in addition to the penalty specified in the subsection. 1, of this section, (a) the rice, as well as any vehicle, vessel, aircraft or another thing whatsoever used in connection with the importation, all the assets, movable, or immovable, including motor vehicles, of any person convicted of the offence, shall be forfeited to the Federal Government”.

The Bill warns that “Any customs officer or other person who aids, counsels, procures, or conspires with any other person to commit an offence under this section, shall be liable on conviction to the same punishment as prescribed for the offence under subsection (1) of this section”.

The bill also adds that “An offence committed under this Bill, shall be triable by the Federal High Court”.

The Bill is expected to be considered and passed by the House this month.

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