Member, House of Representatives, Chikun/Kajuru federal constituency of Kaduna State, under Peoples Democratic Party (PDP), Umar Yakubu Barde, has advocated for the amputation of the hands of those who have looted public funds in the country.
He said those who stole millions of naira should have their hands amputated, while those who have looted in the billions of naira should be hanged to death.
Speaking yesterday at a press conference with Kaduna State chapter of correspondents chapel of Nigeria Union of Journalists (NUJ), Barde said some members of the lower chamber who are of like mind are already looking at the possibility of putting such a law in place to make it legal.
To this end, the lawmaker called for a special court rather than the conventional court to try and sentence looters of public monies to the prescribed capital punishment.
He said “I am a believer in the fact that people should be punished for whatever offence they commit. And I am also of the belief that punishment should also be segregated according to the offence. At least your punishment should be commensurate with what you have done.
“For me, if someone steals from N1 million to N100 million, they should cut his hands. There is nothing wrong with that, so that when we see him, we will know yes, he stole. And those that steal billions upward should be hanged and their property confiscated.
“You can imagine this issue of arms deal. If you knew this money was meant for the procurement of arms, weapons, (consider) if you have a brother in the Army, he is sent to the war front and because his weapons are archaic and he is killed. Do you now want to have sympathy for someone who knows that the money was meant for arms and he pocketed it? It is so painful, we have lost loved ones.
“If I am a judge and such a person is brought before me, I will confisticate his property and make sure he is killed also. Because he bears fault in the blood of the people killed in the war front.
“We are living in a very funny country where people steal N1,000 and they are put in jail for years. And where some people will steal billions and use that same billion to escape justice. That is not good enough.
“If you look at the quantum of corruption in the country today, we are just talking about Dasukigate, and look at the quantum of money and the number of people that are involved. You have not gone to the ministries yet. You have not even gone to the states and it is only ICPC and EFCC that are to do all these jobs.
“If we are fair to ourselves, the work is overwhelming. And you know, people will want to use the legal system to delay Justice, and that is what is happening today. So, why don’t we have dedicated courts to handle all these corruption cases, so that justice could be dispensed quickly?
“I am aware of former Governors who have cases with the EFCC and they have not gone to court for the past eight years. So, this does not encourage the young people. It rather encourages them to steal.
“So, I think we need to put our heads together because corruption, like hunger, does not know party, it does not know tribe of religion. We must as Nigerians take a very bold stand.”