A Customary Court sitting in Pyakasa, FCT, has declared the Idoma tradition of denying women the right to divorce repugnant to natural justice, equity and good conscience.
Another practice that was struck down sought to compel husbands to “return” their wives to the wife’s ancestral home in Igumale before a divorce could become final.
According to this tradition, non-compliance with the demands would incur the wrath of Arekwu, a vicious deity that punishes adultery by killing the children and husbands of women who commit adultery.
In the lead judgment delivered by Hon. Ehusani Simpa Abel, the Court held that “A custom which does not permit the economic, social and political growth of a people is contrary to the rule of Natural Justice, Equity and good conscience… every woman in Nigeria has the right to enter into marriage and a corresponding right to exit any marriage.”