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Updated: Buhari signs Bill on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act, 2019


President Muhammadu Buhari has assented to the Bill on Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters Act, 2019.

Senior Special Assistant to the President on National Assembly Matters, Ita Enang disclosed this on Friday.

The aim of the Act is to obtain from other countries, on a reciprocal basis, mutual assistance in the prosecution of criminal matters, including the location and identification of suspects, witnesses and other materials for prosecution of criminal matters.

Other objectives of the Bill include the identification, tracing, freezing, restraining, recovery, forfeiture and confiscation of proceeds, property and other instrumentalities of crime.
The interception of telecommunications, conversion of electronic surveillance, the restraints of dealings in property, or the freezing of assets, that may be recovered , forfeited or confiscated in respect of offenses.

Others include , any assistance that is not contrary to the municipal law of the requesting State.
The Act has designated the Attorney General of the Federation as the Central Authority for making, receiving and transmitting requests for assistance to and from other countries as well as performing other functions reserved in the Act.

The Act further stipulates that “ Where the alleged offence is of a political character or an offence  under military law or is not an offence under the laws of Nigeria, the provisions of this law shall not apply.

The law, according to Enang “Comes into effect from June 20, 2019.



Tony Ailemen, Abuja