Renowned human rights activist, Deji Adeyanju, has recently made a bold proposal for capital punishment as a deterrent against electoral rigging and manipulation by politicians in Nigeria.
Adeyanju, who is a lawyer and the Convener of Concerned Nigerians, a civil society organization, strongly believes that those found guilty of stealing the mandate of the people through electoral fraud should face severe consequences, including life imprisonment.
In an interview with Vanguard, Adeyanju expressed his views against the backdrop of the alleged irregularities that have marred recent elections in Nigeria. He emphasized that rigging is not just a crime against the electoral process, but a crime against humanity itself.
When a politician steals a mandate that rightfully belongs to the people, they are effectively depriving the public of essential resources and services, such as good roads, schools, hospitals, and a functional educational system, which are vital for a thriving society.
Adeyanju further argued that the electoral system is the foundation of a nation, and any manipulation or rigging of this process undermines the very essence of democracy and steals the humanity of the people.
He strongly advocates for capital punishment as the appropriate penalty for electoral malpractices in Nigeria, stating that a life sentence would be a fitting consequence for those who engage in such heinous acts.
When asked about the issue of constitutional immunity for politicians, Adeyanju clarified that only the President, Vice President, Governors, and Deputy Governors enjoy immunity from civil prosecutions while in office. However, he emphasized that they are not immune from the crimes they commit, and can be held accountable and prosecuted after their tenure expires.