Aug 25, 2015


Credits -

While reading the papers, I came across an article about a man who had raped a 15 year old girl, I am sure such stories or incidents must not be entirely new to you, chances are you have also come across it in the news before. Young unsuspecting children are taking advantage of by adults and it’s not ok for such activities to continue as it may damage the child forever. A lot can be done to curb the shameful act by ensuring prosecution of alleged rapist and the rehabilitation of rape victims. The law has however taking it a step further by providing statute against child pornography.

According to the Cybercrime (Prohibition Prevention) Act, 2015, child pornography includes  pornographic  material  that  visually  depicts -­a  minor  engaged  in  sexually  explicit  conduct;  a  person  appearing  to  be  a  minor  engaged  in  sexually  explicit  conduct;  and  realistic  images  representing  a  minor  engaged  in  sexually  explicit  conduct.  For   the   purpose   of   this   law,   the   term   “child”   or   “minor”   means   a   person below 18 years.

Child pornography laws have existed in other legal jurisdictions for a long time and it’s great to see it being introduced in Nigeria. The Cyber Crime Act 2015 in Section 23 provides in subsection 1 that:

Any  person  who  intentionally  uses  any  computer  system  or  network  in  or  for -­(a)  producing  child  pornography;  (b)  offering  or  making  available  child  pornography;  (c)  distributing  or  transmitting  child  pornography;  (d)  procuring  child  pornography  for  oneself  or  for  another  person; (e)   possessing   child   pornography   in   a   computer   system   or   on   a   computer data  storage  medium: commits  an  offence  under  this  Act  and  shall  be  liable  on  conviction  –
(i)  in  the  case  of  paragraphs  (a),  (b)  and  (c)  to  imprisonment  for  a  term  of  10  years  or  a  fine  of  not  more  than  N20,000,000.00  or  to  both  fine  and  imprisonment;  and

(ii)  in  the  case  of  paragraphs(d)  and  (e)  of  this  subsection,  to imprisonment  for  a  term  of  not  more  than  5  years  or  a  fine  of  not  more  than  N10,000,000.00  or  to  both  such  fine  and  imprisonment.” 
Credits -
Furthermore, any  person  who  knowingly  makes  or  sends  other pornographic  images  to  another  computer by   way   of   unsolicited   distribution   shall   be   guilty   of   an   offence   and   upon  conviction   shall   be   sentenced   to   One   year   imprisonment   or   a   fine   of   Two   Hundred  and  Fifty  Thousand  Naira  or  both.
Subsection (3) states that any  person  who,  intentionally  proposes, grooms  or  solicits,  through  any  computer  system  or  network,  to  meet  a  child  for  the  purpose  of:
(a)  engaging  in  sexual  activities  with  the  child;

(b)  engaging  in  sexual  activities  with  the  child  where  –

(i)  use  is  made  of  coercion,  inducement,  force  or  threats;  
(ii)   abuse is   made   of   a   recognized   position   of   trust, authority   or  influence   over   the  child,  including  within  the  family;  or Child  pornography  and  related  offences.

(iii)   abuse   is   made   of   a   particularly   vulnerable   situation   of   the   child,   mental   or  physical  disability  or  a  situation  of  dependence;

(c)   recruiting,   inducing,   coercing,   exposing,   or   causing   a   child   to   participate   in  pornographic  performances  or  profiting  from  or  otherwise  exploiting  a  child  for  such  purposes; commits  an  offence  under  this  Act  and  shall  be  liable  on  conviction -­

(i)  in  the  case  of  paragraphs  (a)    to  imprisonment  for  a  term  of  not  more  than  10  years  and  a  fine  of  not  more  than  N15,000,000.00;  and
(ii)    in  the  case  of  paragraphs(b)  and(c)  of  this  subsection,  to imprisonment  for  a  term  of  not  more  than  15  years  and  a fine  of  not  more  than  N25,000,000.  

This law is however yet to be fully tested in courts as it is a new legislation and not many people have been charged under its provisions, however, it will serve as a major deterrent to anyone involved in the business of child pornography.

Adedunmade Onibokun