The courtroom of the Igando Customary Court in Lagos was recently turned into a drama stage when a couple appeared before the court for the dissolution of their nine-year-old marriage.
The couple, Emmaunel Adegbola and Olufunke, made allegations and counter allegations of infidelity and rapeEmmanuel alleged that Olufunke was unfaithful and as such, he wanted a divorce, but the wife, in a counter move, alleged that her estranged husband was fond of raping her anytime she was not in the mood to make love.
In his judgment, the court president, Mr R. I. Adeyeri, said it appeared that the estranged couple were tired of the marriage and love had been lost since all efforts to reconcile both parties had failed.
“Since both parties consented to the dissolution of the marriage, the court has no choice but to dissolve the union. Both parties are no longer husband and wife. They are free to go their separate ways,” he said.
The court further ruled that the issue of custody of their four children, aged between four and eight years, including a set of twins, should be referred to the family court within the Lagos Judicial Division.
It also ordered Emmanuel to pay N50,000 as rehabilitation cost to his wife.
63-year-old Emmanuel, in his petition, filed on June 26, 2013, had asked for the dissolution of his nine-year-old marriage for alleged infidelity on the part of his wife.
He alleged that his wife was having an affair and that her lover always came to his their house whenever he (Adegbola) travelled out of Lagos on business.
“My wife was harbouring her boyfriend in the house I rented for her. Anytime I went there unannounced, I always met the man. My wife was unable to give a satisfactory answer on who he is or his mission in my house.”
He alleged further that his wife started threatening his business by setting up the same business close to his business address and was diverting his customers to her shop.
“Initially, I told her that we should start a pure water business together, she told me she was not interested. But later, she opened her own pure water business without my consent, snatching all my customers and this is is now affecting my own business,” he said.He added that his wife was no more cooking for him, as she would complain of tiredness, and “that I should go and cook for myself.”
But 40-year-old Olufunke didn’t let this go unchallenged. She not only denied the allegations but also told the court that the man her husband used to see in her house, was her brother and she was not having an affair with any man.
She stated further that she was not threatening her husband’s business but was forced to set up her own business because her husband was not paying her salary but was using her as a slave.
“My husband was only using me as a slave, he was not giving me money. He and his first wife were sharing the proceeds from the business,” she said.