The bill entitled “A Bill for an Act to Prohibit the Desecration of Sanctity of Human Life and Dead Bodies in Nigeria” was sponsored by Rep. Rita Orji (PDP-Lagos).
Presenting the bill, Orji said that when passed, it shall defend the sanctity of human life as well as compel people to respect the dead.
According to her, the desecration of a dead body should not be tolerated in any way.
Orji pointed out that all over the world, institutions which handled dead bodies, including security agencies, follow laid down rules.
“All religions have respect for the dead; different religions, especially the monotheistic faiths, don’t accept any desecration of their own dead or the enemy’s dead,” she said.
Speaking in support of the bill, Rep. Johnson Agbonayinma (PDP-Edo) expressed concern over how dead bodies were handled in the country.
According to him, the manner which Nigerians treat dead bodies will continue to place the country in bad light.
“I wonder how people would decide to make money from dead bodies; this is another form of corruption.
“Remember, we are all going to die one day, so let us all support the bill,’’ Agbonayinma said.
Also, Rep. Henry Archibong (PDP-Akwa Ibom) said “in the modern day Nigeria, a lot of people are into selling of dead bodies.
“Some are even exhumed, dismembered and sold or used for all kinds of rituals.
“If the bill is passed and signed into law, it will take care of such acts as adequate penalties will face the culprits,’’ Archibong added.
Through a unanimous decision, the bill passed second reading and was referred to the next stage.