Something has to be done….

22 Jul

I’m not sure if you are aware but the Nigerian Senate is in the middle of a pretty hot topic. They are debating the idea of legalising under age marriage. That’s right. I’m not even joking. Nigeria, one of the wealthiest and fastest developing countries in Africa. The ‘Jewel’ of Africa? Frankly, what angers me is not even the idea. There will always be awful people in this world. What really gets to me is that this has become a debate. Why is this even being considered? Is it not obvious in our world what is right and wrong anymore? Of all the things to worry about in Nigeria. The imprisonment of innocent undeveloped girls to old men?

If you pray, please pray for Nigeria. Pray for all the girls who have dreams before their right to choose them is taken away. The wonderful Nigerian actress Stella Damascus has taken to Youtube to vent, I’ve never seen her out of character so angry!

Please take a moment to sign this petition.

 

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One Response to “Something has to be done….”

  1. riyageh July 23, 2013 at 2:53 am #

    I agree that Nigeria must do all it can to prevent child abuse in the form of underage marriage, however one must take a close look at the facts, understand them and identify the best way to tackle the issue. As it stands the Federal Republic of Nigeria’s constitution clearly states that the minimum age for marriage is 18, there is however a subsection of the constitution in reference to a citizen renouncing his or her citizenship that indicates that for this purpose any female that is married is considered an adult and eligible to renounce said citizenship. The misinterpretation of a noble attempt by the constitution review comitee to repeal S29(4)(b) has led to mass hysteria on the part of the citizenry who just need a reason to find something wrong with Nigeria. Many people forget that Nigeria practices federalism, under this system there is division of power and the federal republic is solely responsible for all issues of national scope such as defense, security, finance and all other issues are handled locally (state/LG) such as education, infrastructure and as many people are now finding out this why though the FG gives the minimum age of marriage as 18, it is not a uniform rule and is interpreted differently across the regions. Another thing to remember is that Nigeria has 3 legal systems all operating simultaneously and independent of each other, “Islamic, Civil, and Customary” with the FG having authority over Civil laws only. My point is this is not a simple fix, and when we vilify our representatives for trying to actually do their job which is to talk and debate issues, we are the ones that deny the children the opportunity to grow. It is time to stop looking at our nation through the prism of the West and accept that we are different. Culturally, a married woman is considered an adult and with this i argue that it is not the constitution that needs to change rather the culture and perception in the society that needs to change because if parents or guardians do not consent to marriage between a child and an adult child brides will cease to exist.

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