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Magistrate moves to settle divorce case out of court


By Edith Igbokwe

Oshodi Customary Court has recommended Alternative Dispute Resolution (ADR) to save a five year-old marriage from breaking up and adjourned to Thursday August 29, this year.


Blessing Udeh, 28 years petitioner had filed a case of divorce on March 25, praying the court to dissolve her marriage contracted under traditional law in 2014 with the respondent, Mr. John Udeh who is 30 years.



Blessing Udeh sought divorce as she claimed that the marriage was full of constant fighting, threats to kill her mother, humiliation, frustration and denial of access to see her four year old son, Michael.


The petitioner stated that the respondent threw her belongings out of their matrimonial home twice, accused her of prostitution and assaulted her while on bike and tore her clothes which were brought as evidence to the court.



The respondent insisted in his statement that the petitioner is a prostitute, saying that he has seen her sitting around men several times and have cautioned her that it was against their Benue tradition from where they both come.


However, he accepted that he sent the petitioner back to her parents’ house only once, confirming that he denied her access to his son because Benue tradition forbids a mother engaging in prostitution to take care of the husband’s child.


Noticing that the respondent was still interested in the marriage, the presiding magistrate, Mrs. Adebisi Laditan asked him three times if he still wanted his wife (Blessing) back and he responded affirmatively.



The magistrate thereby suggested Alternative Dispute Resources (ADR) as she adjourned the case till Thursday August, 29, 2019.


She however warned the respondent not to cross the petitioner’s paths again until the case is resolved and that the respondent should provide his witness to proof that the petitioner is a prostitute before the court on the stated next sitting.