A monarch, HRH Igwe Samuel Ezekwo, has dumped his 17-year-old marriage, dragging his wife and father-in-law before a customary court sitting in Igbo-Ukwu and presided over by Barr Chinelo Egili to demand the sum of N60, which he paid as bride price to marry his banker wife, Lolo Chizoba Ezekwo, 17 years ago.
When the matter came up for hearing yesterday, Chizoba’s counsel, Barr Madubuike Churchill, who also represented Chizoba’s father who is the second respondent, filed a petition seeking the dismissal of Ezekwo’s petition on the grounds that the court lacks jurisdiction to entertain the matter.
Churchill told the court that the marriage was conducted under the Marriage Act, and that the court lacks jurisdiction to hear the matter. He called on the court president to strike out the matter and award the cost of the case to Ezekwo for wasting the respondents’ resources.
Barr Ezeonwuka Ezeonwuka, counsel to Ezekwo, insisted that the matter is within the jurisdiction of the court as no formal wedding was conducted between the couple, and that what they called a wedding was a mere church blessing which was not conducted under the Marriage Act or in a licensed place of worship.
He urged the court president to dissolve the marriage as the parties were tired of living together, more so as several parties had tried to mediate between the couple without success.
After considering the argument of both counsel, the president of the court, Barr Egili, adjourned the matter for ruling on February 18.