A mother of five, Ramat Abideen, on Monday, asked a Mapo Grade A Customary Court in Ibadan to dissolve her marriage of 18 years to her estranged husband, Yusuf, on grounds of constant battery.
Ramat said that she had endured pain and humiliation since she moved in with Abideen in spite of his failure to pay her bride price.
“When my elder brother who is a friend to Abideen got to know about his proposal to marry me, he opposed it, but I insisted on marrying him.
“I turned down my brother’s advice not to marry him because Abideen swore on the holy Quran to take good care of me.
“Firstly, he took the sum of N83,000 that I saved for the purpose of buying a piece of land from me.
“Furthermore, he beats the hell out of me at the slightest provocation even when he got a second wife.
“At some point, Abideen left Ibadan to work in Igboora, I followed him and he never stopped assaulting me.
“Besides the untold domestic violence against me, Abideen has refused to join me in catering for one of our children and the only son who is physically challenged,” Ramat said.
However, Abideen, refused to enter appearance in the case.
Delivering judgement, the Court’s President, Mrs S.M. Akintayo, held that there was no marriage to be dissolved between Ramat and Abideen since there was never a contractual marriage in the first place.
She said that since Abideen did not pay any bride price, an essential element in a customary marriage, there was no marriage to dissolve.
Akintayo, however, awarded custody of the five children produced by the couple to the petitioner and directed Ramat not to deny Abideen access to the children.
She also granted an order restraining Abideen from threatening, harassing and interfering in the private life of the petitioner.
The court’s president further held that both Ramat and Abideen should be jointly responsible for sponsorship of the children’s education and their welfare.