Getting married to someone you do not know. To someone you do not love. To someone old enough to be your father. The Nigerian constitution has for a long time been at odds; although a child officially becomes an adult at 18, a clause allowed females to get married in sharia states and as such become legal irrespective of their age. So when the Senate proposed to find a solution for the loophole, the nation’s support was ubiquitous. What people didn’t realize was that the Senators will overlook the most humanely solution and opt for the simplest, using the sharia law to re-affirm the loophole. The re-affirmation of the clause inappropriately uses the sharia law to support the marriage to underage girls which will have severe consequences.
The Senators chosen are usually candidates with high esteem; Men and women who have acquired certified degrees in a range of professions; People who have gone on to be outstanding in their different fields. How then is it possible that the basis for their argument is belittered with bias? The former Governor and current senator, Ahmed Sani Yerima, was exposed to be a major defender in the retention of the underage marriage policy using sharia law. However, Yarima had been accused in court of marrying underage girls: two girls aged 13 and another younger than 18. Consequently, Yarima had a conflict of interest in this debate. His personal affairs should have made him unable to partake in a debate that was concerned with the nation. Thus any conclusion arising from the deliberations of the senators is biased and unfair.
Yarima argues that “under islamic tenets, a woman is of age once married, and to counter that will be discriminatory”. In other words, Yarmia concludes that irrespective of th...
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...t to a forceful marriage.
Essentially a majority religion cannot be the only basis of national legislation. This makes the law immoral as it imposes beliefs on others. Besides that, certain behaviors that may be supported by religion should be ignored if they contradict the constitution or go against rationale. Remembering that the options available to us aren’t always two sided, lets try to pick the least harmful choice. In this case, compelling men to marry legally mature young women instead of abducted teenagers. This will ensure that women are getting married and not abused.
World Watch Monitor. “Under-age Marriage Loophole Allowed Into Nigeria[‘s] Constitution” Open Doors. Open Door USA. June 24 2013. Web. September 4 2013.
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