‘My husband emplied my shop, burnt my dresses, stole my N30,000’

Sat May 14th, 2022 - Lagos

Grade A Customary Court, Mapo, Ibadan, Oyo State, has heard the prayer of a woman, Iyabo Olalekan, who sought for the dissolution of her 14-year-old wedlock with her husband, Tunde Sule.

Iyabo in her divorce suit accused her husband of irresponsibility and battery.

The plaintiff added that the defendant forced her shop open and packed away her goods.

She further stated that he burnt her clothes, forcefully took custody of their child, after which he threatened to kill her.

Iyabo told the court it was best she went away from her husband because her life was no longer safe with him.

The plaintiff also entreated the court to grant her custody of their son because her husband had consistently failed in his responsibility towards him.

Tunde admitted to the third and fifth charges but denied others when the claims were read to him.

Iyabo in her testimony said, “I met my husband in Lagos and we dated.

“While dating we used to have a lot of differences, but we would make up at the end of the day.

“I ought to have known from our frequent fights then that our relationship would not work, but I was blind to the truth.

“I moved in with him after he impregnated me and my life turned sour because he never stopped maltreating me.

“He neglected me throughout the time I was carrying our child and also failed to meet my needs.

“I opened a shop in order to sustain myself financially, but had to close it down because business wasn’t booming in the area.

“My business took a new turn after I moved to Bodija market. I was able to meet my needs and that of our child.

“I informed my husband I wanted to visit my children from my first marriage, but he refused that I went with our child.

“I was left with no other option than to go with our son because there was no one available to watch over him while I was away on the visit.

“On returning home, our neighbours told me my husband had been furious since I left. According to them, I flouted his order not to take our child along with me.

“They added that he had vowed to kill me.

“I left home before he returned from work on hearing this and spent the night at my friend’s place.

“Tunde came to beat me in my shop the following day. He forced my shop open after he had beaten me blue black and packed away my goods.

“My lord, the goods my husband went away with can be valued at N450,000.

“He also stole my N30,000.

“My lord, when I returned home later in the day, I met him burning my clothes.

“I ran to the spot to rescue the remaining clothes from fire, but he pounced on me and pulled our child in an attempt to remove him from my back.

“I struggled with him, but he refused to let go. Our son was yelling on my back as his father was pulling him. I finally allowed him to take the child from me because I couldn’t bear the pain our son was going through as a result of my husband’s abuse of him.

“Tunde on that same day went to my mother’s shop and humiliated her by saying unprinted words to her. She told her he was no longer interested in our marriage.

“He later took our son to Ogbomoso and dumped him there with a member of his family.

“My lord, I appeal to this honourable court to rule that he returned our son to me and make him responsible for his welfare.

“I further pray the court to restrain him from coming to threaten or fight me in my abode or work place,” the plaintiff begged.

Tunde in his response said, “My lord, my wife lied that I am irresponsible. I was the one who made her.

“I empowered Iyabo after she moved in with me. I gave her N30,000 to start a business and that was the money I took from her shop.

“She initially cooked and sold noodles and fried eggs. Unfortunately, the business didn’t thrive, so she abandoned it.

“I bought her a refrigerator and she sold water and soft drinks in the house. My wife later got a shop at Bodija market at the rate of N36,000 per annum.

“I was the one who paid the rent, yet she painted me as irresponsible.

“We started experiencing a strain in our relationship when Iyabo started coming home late from shop. She never returned home earlier than 10:00 p.m. The more I complained, the worse she became.

“She would tell me she had many customers to attend to, but I never believe her.

“I once came across her picture on her phone. In the picture she was hugging another man,” the defendant said.

“My lord, Iyabo did the unpardonable when she deserted the home for six weeks.

“She told me she wanted to pay her children from her first marriage a visit and I obliged her with the condition that she mustn’t go with our child.

“My wife flouted my order and went with our son.

“Iyabo at another time dumped our child with our neighbour and spent six weeks with her other children. I refused to call or ask after her throughout this period.

“I took our child from the neighbour and put him under my mother’s care at Ogbomoso.

“Fuming, I went to her shop on a Sunday after she had returned home and I found her in the company of men.

“She went into hiding immediately she sighted me. I sat in her shop for hours, but left after she refused to come out of her hiding.

“I went to her shop with a tricycle the following day and packed all her wares home,” Tunde concluded.

Giving her judgment after he had heard both parties, the court president, Mrs S.M Akintayo, observed that their relationship had broken down irretrievable.

Ruling, Akintayo declared their marriage dissolved.

She granted the plaintiff custody of their child and ordered both to be responsible for his welfare — feeding, clothing and education among others.

She ordered the plaintiff to grant the defendant access to their child.

Akintayo further restrained the defendant from going to the plaintiff’s house or shop to harass, threaten or fight her.

Both were advised to maintain peace.


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source: Tribune