Reverend Father Thaddeus Kuusah, the Northern Regional Executive Secretary of the National Peace Council (NPC) has urged citizens to refrain from engaging in acts of vigilantism, especially through the influence of politicians as the nation is preparing to go to the polls.
He said all vigilante activities were banned under the Vigilantism and Related Act ,2019 , adding that “ individuals who engage in vigilantism and other related activities are liable to a term of imprisonment of not less than 10 years and not more than fifteen years”.
Rev Kuusah stated this at a two-day campaign event organised by the NPC on the eradication of vigilantism in the country.
He said the advocacy was not only focused on vigilante groups, but also land guards and politicians, adding that the Act 2019 also applies similar prohibition and charges to offenders.
The event sought to educate stakeholders on the role of NPC and how citizens would help to promote peace in this year’s elections, come December 2020.
Participants at the event included; political party representatives, representatives of some vigilante groups, traditional and religious leaders among others.
Rev Kuusah highlighted poverty and politicians as the two main causes of vigilantism, saying these contributed in affecting the country’s effort in securing sustainable peace and development.
He noted that conflict was detrimental to peace and should be tackled using systems such as identifying early warning signs to potential crises by detecting and monitoring early signs of conflicts.
Sheik Zakaria Al Hussein, a member of the NPC, advised the youth to desist from engaging in violent activities facilitated by politician, especially during the upcoming 2020 election.
He called on the youth to channel their energies and demand positive change and accountability to get the kind of development they wish for.