Nigeria: Court Dissolves 14-Year-Old Marriage Due to Alleged Spiritual Incompatibility

Nigeria: Court Dissolves 14-Year-Old Marriage Due to Alleged Spiritual Incompatibility

By Ahmad Hadizat Omayoza, Mamos Nigeria

In a recent ruling, the Mapo Grade A Customary Court in Ibadan finalized the dissolution of a 14-year-long marriage between John Akinwumi, a commercial driver, and his estranged wife, Toyin. The decision came after Akinwumi cited persistent domestic violence and spiritual mismatch as grounds for separation.

Akinwumi, during the court proceedings presided over by Mrs. S.M. Akintayo, expressed his plea to terminate the union due to his wife’s alleged neglect, particularly during his periods of severe illness. He recounted how the marriage, which initially showed promise, deteriorated into constant conflict and lack of affection.

Despite the support he received from Toyin’s family to establish a transport business, Akinwumi asserted that the relationship had become unsustainable and requested the court’s intervention to dissolve it. He emphasized his desire for separation, stating that the marriage was untenable, and they were not meant to be together.

In response, Toyin contested the separation, professing her enduring love for Akinwumi and refuting several of the accusations against her. She highlighted her husband’s abandonment of her and their children, lamenting their financial struggles and the inadequate support provided by Akinwumi.

In her judgment, Mrs. Akintayo acknowledged the existence of a valid traditional marriage between the couple, as evidenced by the payment of bride price. Considering Akinwumi’s assertion that he no longer harbored affection for Toyin, the court concluded that dissolution was inevitable. The marriage was officially dissolved, with both parties instructed to maintain peace, and Toyin was prohibited from harassing or threatening Akinwumi.

This case underscores the complexities of marital relationships and the challenges faced when irreconcilable differences arise. Despite the emotional toll, the court’s decision provides a legal resolution, allowing both individuals to move forward with their lives separately.

As the parties involved navigate the aftermath of their separation, the judgment serves as a reminder of the importance of mutual respect and understanding in sustaining matrimonial bonds.

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