Senate President David Mark
On Wednesday in Abuja, at the inauguration of the Senate Joint Committee on Petroleum Industry Bill, Senate President David Mark advocated the death penalty for oil thieves.
But he added a caveat, “if it will stop oil theft and bunkering.” The truth is that it will not. What will arrest the scourge of oil theft is a sincere effort to block the many loopholes in the oil industry and equip the police and other law enforcement agencies.
There are enough penalties in the Nigerian law books to deter oil thieves. What the country lacks is honest and effective law enforcement. Records of arrest and effective prosecution and conviction of oil thieves even under the current laws remain awfully scanty or non-existent, despite the hue and cry about oil theft.
Besides, how many people have actually been executed in the country, outside the military regimes, since independence?