The prayer of a mother of five, Ajaara Lawal, before a customary court sitting at Oja-Oba, Ibadan, that her 22-year-old marriage to her husband, Dauda Lawal, be dissolved over lack of care of the children has been answered.
Ajaara alleged that after she had had four children for Lawal with a resolve not to have any more, her husband, in 2013, forcefully had sex with her, which resulted in another baby.
The court heard from the petitioner that in her effort to ensure Lawal became responsive in taking care of the children in the marriage, she had an accident in 2014 while returning from their family house. She added that she spent two months on admission at a hospital following the accident but her husband refused to pay the hospital bills nor visit her in the hospital.
Ajaara said rather, after she returned home from the hospital, her husband absconded the matrimonial and moved to one she said he rented for his second wife. She, therefore, prayed the court to end the marriage and compel the respondent to begin performing his fatherly role on the children.
Lawal, however, begged the court to let the marriage be, saying he still loved Ajaara, though she was “troublesome”. He said the problem he was encountering in his marriage was as a result of the challenges he had with his mother-in-law at the inception of the marriage. He admitted abandoning his matrimonial home to stay with his younger brother, but attributed it to what he called the domineering attitude of his wife. “I don’t want to put my life at risk,” he said.
The president of the court, Chief Ademola Odunade, dissolved the marriage and granted the petitioner custody of the five children. Chief Odunade ordered the respondent to be paying Ajaara a sum of N15,000 monthly, through the court, for the feeding of the children.