The increasing cases domestic violence has led some clerics to conclude that no marriage is worth dying for. Consequently, the men in the collars, who ordinarily should defend the biblical injunction for couples to remain faithful to marriage vows, for better or for worse, till death do they part, have now advised spouses in troubled marriages to run for dear life if the domestic voilence pose grave danger to them.
The National and International Coordinator of Christian Pentecostal Mission (CPM), Mrs. Mercy Ezekiel, told Sunday Telegraph “I think that no marriage is worth dying for. If you find out that your marriage poses grave danger to your life, what will you be doing staying in such union?”
The General Overseer of a London-based Pentecostal church, Pastor Alex Omokudu, did not differ in his view. “I am very open because if I deceive you, I am deceiving God. I just divorced and I am very happy; but believe me I am against divorce. “I make sure there is no divorce, but when it comes to a case where a woman brings out a knife to stab her husband, I will tell the man to run.
Same applies to a woman when a man is violent and brandish knife to kill her. At that point she should run for her life.” In his own case, the Catholic Bishop of Sokoto Diocese, Dr. Mathew Hassan Kukah, didn’t mince words on the issue.
He said: “If staying married to your spouse poses grave danger as a result of domestic violence, you will be right to run for dear life.”
However, he added a proviso: “But that is not to say that the troubled partner should run out of the marriage. You should remain committed to reconciliation. If you are studying for a university degree, will you not struggle to acquire your degreedespite threats to life. Meanwhile, increasing cases of wives killing their husbands and husbands mercilessly stabbing wives to death, have become a recurring Incident in Nigeria today.
It has also left many wondering what might be the cause and one wonders where the society is headed. Just recently, the Lagos State Police Command arrested one Olaoluwa Adejo, a 32-year-old banker, in connection to the death of his 28-year-old wife simply identified as Maureen. Adejo, who lives on Peluola Street, Oworonshoki in the Bariga area of Lagos State, was alleged to have tortured his wife, beat her with belt and inflicted machete cuts on her.
According to a national newspaper, while giving account of Adejo’s brutal murder of his wife of five years, their five year-old son, Richard told the Police: “I am Richard Adejo. I am five years old. My daddy beat my mummy with a belt; macheted her here (shows arms), machete her here (shows legs).
“He used the belt on her here (points at face); forced my mummy to drink otapiapia (insecticide). My daddy took my mummy away.” In Ibadan, Oyo State, a female lawyers Yewande Oyediran, was sentenced to seven years imprisonment for sending her own husband to early grave.
Yewande, a former staff of the Department of Public Prosecution in the Oyo State Ministry of Justice, was convicted for killing her husband with a knife after a disagreement on February 2, 2016, at their residence in Akobo area of Ibadan.
Pronouncing the sentence, Justice Muntar Abimbola of the Oyo State High Court sitting in Ibadan, said the convict was charged on a murder count and evidence pointed to Yewande as the killer of her husband; but witnesses presented by the defence counsel failed to establish the intent behind the killing.
The court held that going by the relationship between Yewande and her husband as a couple (at the time of the husband’s death), the killing was done without intent. Similarly, a clergyman and a Youth pastor with the Redeemed Christian Church of God (RCCG), Pastor Akolade Arowolo, was sentenced to death after being found guilty of stabbing his wife mercilessly and watching her bleed to death. He is to die by hanging for killing his banker wife.
Many Nigerians are now concerned about what might be responsible for such bitterness that could make one murder his or her spouse in cold blood. Speaking yesterday on ‘The Catholic Family And the Crisis of Modernity’, during the 38th Supreme Council Convention of the Knights of St. Mulumba, at St. Leo’s Catholic Church, Ikeja, Lagos, Bishop Kukah noted that, modernisation has had unfortunate tolls on the institution of marriage and that the tactics on which marriages were built upon needed fine tuning.