A 38-year-old Lagos hairdresser, Abosede Olaoye, has approached an Agege Customary Court in Lagos, pleading for the dissolution of her 18-year marriage, saying her husband beats her.
She told the court that even though she married her husband, Rotimi, in 1999, no dowry was paid.
She said, “He beats me anytime I ask for our children’s school fees and he always claims that he had not been paid salary. When he is paid, he tells me he spends his salary to pay debtors but he plays ‘Baba-Ijebu’ (lotto) with his money.
“When I told him I was no longer interested in the marriage and threatened to pack out of the house, he intensified his beating.”
Abosede told the court that their relatives had tried to settle their quarrel but that her husband had refused to change.
The Ondo indigene told the court that she finally packed out of Rotimi’s house in August 2016.
“Since the day I packed out, he had always threatened me over the phone that if he sees me dating any man, he would kill me, kill the man and kill himself. People have warned me to stay clear of him because he walks around with a cutlass under his cloth,” Abosede said.
She told the court that she married Rotimi when he had nothing but that when he got a job and became comfortable, he married a second wife, who later left him.
The hairdresser said she reported her husband to his elder brother when the beating became too much but that the brother advised her to divorce him.
“He even directed me to a human rights office and I was told to go to court,” she said.
He said, “I told her I wanted to rent a mini-flat but she wanted a duplex and we agreed that she would stay with her friend for a short till I could raise enough money.
“Four days after she left the house, she instructed me never to come to her shop again. I was surprised but I stopped going there.
Rotimi said it was true that their relations tried to settle the matter but that they had some period of peace after that.
“There was a particular day she told me she wanted pepper soup and I told her I knew a good place but she insisted on another place. I became furious because it was obvious she was seeing another man in the place,” he said.
Abosede’s husband said he only beat her once.
He said it was a day he didn’t have enough money to pay the children’s school fees and she refused to pay it.
“I told her I would close down her shop if she did not pay the fees since I was the one who established the business for her. When she became rude and attacked me physically, I hit her,”
He denied not taking proper care of his wife and children.
“I spend all my savings on her and the children and I even abandoned the other wife because of her. Her mother helped me get a job and I have never disrespected her mother,” he said.
Court President, Dr S.O. Whenu adjourned the case till Tuesday, April 11, 2017 for judgement.