Those who attempt suicide in Nigeria and fail will spend one year in jail if successfully prosecuted and convicted!
The Criminal Code Act 2004 clearly states in section 327: “Any person who attempts to kill himself is guilty of a misdemeanor, and is liable to imprisonment for one year.”
But in Lagos, the law is more sympathetic. Lagos Criminal Laws of 2011 in Section 233 states: “Any person who attempts to kill himself is guilty of a simple offence and the court shall make a hospitalisation order.”
What’s more interesting is that those who attempt suicide are generally believed to have mental health issues. And the Criminal Code Act of 1990 on criminal responsibilities excludes those who have mental health issues.
Chapter 5, sections 27 and 28 read: “Every person is presumed to be of sound mind, and to have been of sound at any time which comes in question, until the contrary is proven.
“A person is not criminally responsible for an act or omission if at the time of doing the act or making the omission he is in such a state of mental disease or natural mental infirmity as to deprive him the capacity to understand what he is doing, or of capacity to control his actions, or of capacity to know that he ought not to do the actress or make the omission.”
So, can a failed suicide victim be successfully prosecuted since he possibly has mental health issues?