It is a popular lyrical admonition in Nigeria: What God has joined together, let no man put asunder.
A Nigerian court has decided to heed its message and save a three-year-old marriage, rather than putting it asunder.
A female judge at the Ikorodu Customary Court in Lagos on Thursday decided to settle the dispute between the couple, Mr and Mrs Oluwasegun Fatomilola, rather than pronouncing their separation.
Oluwasegun, 48, a civil servant, had filed a divorce suit, after accusing his wife, Abigail, 28, of threatening his life and always fomenting trouble with him and neighbours.
The President of the court, Mrs Risikat Ekerin, saved the union after several counseling sessions with the couple and their families.
Ekerin also requested the respondent, Abigail, to sign an undertaking that she would not threaten her husband again and would live in peace with him and other neighbours.
Oluwasegun, who resides at 2 Kayode Street, Owutu-Ikorodu, Lagos, had told the court that his wife fights with neighbours and often cursed the children of his late wife. “My wife is very troublesome; she fights with everybody in our neighbourhood. “I packed out of the house because of her troubles; she had once told me that I would die like my senior wife. “I have been giving her and our only child the sum of N24,000($150) monthly but yet she would still come to my office to shout and disgrace me. “I am praying the court to dissolve the marriage now to enable me to move on with my life,” he had told the court on July 30.
However, his estranged wife, who resides at Salome Isaac Street, Owutu-Ikorodu, objected to the divorce.
“When I had my child, my husband was not responsible for ante-natal care; it was my mother that cared for me. My husband had deserted us since last year. He only told me he was going for a seminar and never came back home till today. Though he accused me of killing his senior wife, but the allegation is not true. I still love him,’’ she had said.