Cutting the Limbs or Incarceration for Theft/Stealing: An Evaluation of the Crime and Penalty for Theft/Stealing Under the Nigerian and Ghanaian Laws
Aminu Adamu Bello
Ahmadu Bello University, Zaria
September 12, 2008
Islamic Law and Law of the Muslim World Paper No. 08-44
It would appear that the definition of the crime of theft or stealing is universal. In Nigera, the Criminal Code, the Penal Code and the Shari'a Penal Code(s) make clear and specific provisions that remove any ambiguity as to what constitutes the crime of stealing (Criminal Code) and theft (Penal Code and Shari'a Penal Code(s)) while in Ghana, the Criminal Code, Act 29 also makes elaborate specifications as to the elements of the crime. In both jurisdictions, it is illegal to take or illegally convert a thing which belongs to another. It is however in the definition of the thing capable of being the subject matter of the offence that there is significant difference.
This evaluation examines the similarities and differences in the definition of the thing capable of being stolen and the kind of punishment prescribed for the offence in the two jurisdictions. The discovery that the definition of a thing capable of being stolen in Ghana Act 29 provisions are close to Northern Nigeria State(s) Shari'a Penal Code provisions is startling.
Number of Pages in PDF File: 24
Keywords: Theft, Sariqa, Stealing, Cutting of limbs, Penal Code, Shari'a Penal Code, Criminal Code, Ghana Act 29
Date posted: September 13, 2008 ; Last revised: January 11, 2009