Court rules father can choose husband for daughter but can’t force her into marriage
A 20-year-old woman, Fatima Aliyu, on Monday, prayed a Shari’a court in Kaduna, Kaduna State, to stop her father, Aliyu Muhammad, from forcing her to marry a stranger.
Fatima, who spoke though her counsel, Malam Y. A. Bulama, told the court that she had someone she loved.
Bulama said, “The father wants my client to marry a man in their village in Niger State. Right now she’s living in her auntie’s house because he threatened to take her to the village and marry her off.”
He noted that the complainant did not file a suit against her father out of disrespect for him.
On his part, the father said his late parents chose the groom for his daughter when they were alive and that he had to respect their wish.
He said, “I married my six daughters off in the village and they are doing well. Fatima’s mother is the brain behind her stubbornness.
“I need permission to consult with my people over this matter.”
The Judge, Malam Isiyaku Abdulrahman, held that a father had the right to choose a husband for his daughter under Shari’a law.
He, however, noted that forced marriage was not encouraged and advised the defendant to be patient with his daughter.
He advised that, “You are her father. Therefore, you should pray for the best for her because if you are angry with her she won’t see good things.
“Allow her to present the person she wants to marry and if you are pleased with his religion and character, you allow her get married.”
He also advised the complainant to be a respectful daughter.
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