Justice Minister withdrew the Prevention and Combating of Torture Bill in the National Assembly in order to analyse its content and ensure that it complies

Justice Minister Sacky Shanghala yesterday withdrew the Prevention and Combating of Torture Bill in the National Assembly (NA) in order to analyse its content and ensure that it complies with the expectations of the United Nations Convention against Torture.

The convention requires states to take effective measures to prevent torture within their borders, including criminalising torture and forbidding states from transporting people to any country where there is reason to believe they will be tortured.

Introduced in the NA for discussion on 17 September this year, the bill will apply to public officials who torture another person; order the torture of another person and knowingly permit or tolerate the torture of another person by a person under his or her command or by a person reporting to him or her.

On conviction, such a person would be liable to imprisonment for life.

In an interview with Nampa after withdrawing the bill, Shanghala explained that in the past it was believed that the subject of torture was dealt with in the fundamental human rights that guarantee freedom from torture and degrading treatment, hence the need for specific legislation on torture.

Source: Namibia Press Agency