I would like to state here that the Right to Religion should not be abused. While we have the freedom to choose what/who we belief in which in turn affects our opinions, decisions and actions, we have absolutely NO RIGHT whatsoever to force it on another being. Moreover, we must be humane, reasonable and abide by the laws of the society we belong.
It is said that the senate proceedings on child marriage were actually not about child marriage but about the right of a married lady no matter how young, to be empowered “of age,” to take important decisions like renunciation of her citizenship, if she so desires–to seek foreign asylum for instance.
We ask now that “of age” of the “married woman” should be defined. If the girl child wasn’t married, we won’t need the sub-section b of Section 29(1) in the first place. May I add here that using his beliefs the yardstick for the determining marriageable age of the Nigerian Girl Child or Female is rather oppressive noting that Nigeria is a ‘FREE’ State.
In his reply http://www.naijapundit.com/news/yerima-responds-to-critics-of-early-marriage-says-i-will-slap-the-demon-out-of-your-head, he states that Nigeria’s MANY UNCOUNTABLE problem does not include early marriage but that early marriage is the solution to Half of our MANY UNCOUNTABLE problems. How does an issue which is not a problem become a solution? Is he trying to say that half of Nigeria’s question is early-marriage based or he is simply ignorant of the “problem vs solution” concept?
Early marriage has caused health/sex related issues, domestic abuse, illiteracy and increased death rates in Nigeria amongst others. These problems are part of Nigeria’s problems and they stem from early marriage. When benefits and disadvantages are weighed, the implication is overwhelming, the stories are disheartening. I wonder what he is talking about.
Indeed, it is not our business if you decide to give your girl child out in marriage at the age of 6 years. However, as a State it is our business to protect one another and that includes the basic human rights of your daughter as she not an object but a citizen of the Federal Republic of Nigeria and as such should not be given out as one would give one.
I find it disturbing that the defence in the name of religion and culture for some is seemingly been pushed down our throats as the only perspective in determining the marriageable age when these same factors are excluded from issues such as investments. Clearly this view when examined will point to the abuse of the female gender and women rights.
Think about this: What religion/culture supports the marriage between an old woman and a boy child?
I let this rest.
This article “My Thoughts On ‘Child’ Marriage – By Dr. Peregrino Brimah” http://abusidiqu.com/?p=15775 defines a child as being physical and biological-without mentioning the maturity of the mind. What of the psychological state of the child? Do we ignore an important aspect of development such as the mind of a child simply because its our culture and belief? How does a child choose when he/she is not informed or lacks indepth understanding of the weight of the choice made? A Right the girl child is denied simply because she now wears a bra!!!
It goes on to say that the Vesico Vaginal Fistula is not caused by early marriage but caused if one is malnourished and in a 3rd world country with poor health facilities. I have just a sentence :Please take a look around if you are in Nigeria. Moreover, why is it prevalent in female child in the 6-17 age range?
As rightly put with statistics, I add that not all girl children will be married to RICH OLD MEN who can afford good health care should complications arise. Ergo, the early marriage which is “not Nigeria’s problem” becomes a big one as a greater number of the underaged married girl (WOMAN) cannot access good health care. Guess who foots the bill?
Again, I ask why “these women”-VVFs victims and married girl child- are excluded from making decisions? He answers. This is however stems from the fact that they are considered ignorant and have no voice despite the fact that they are MARRIED and can renounce their citizenship. This would be different if they were not legally sold or “given” out.
May I point out at this junction that this article gives insight to what early marriage problems are-solution to some persons- and fingers the State health challenges. In restrospect we do not have the “machineries” to legalise child marriage.
Femi Kayode on “evolution” says it all here “A Nation Of Perverts and Paedophiles” http://t.co/kqP9kzvFmI. Because it was done in decades past does not mean we should continue to operate as of old. Even then, Joseph in bible times according to Dr. Peregrino Brimah-lost bible-recognised that “she was a GIRL lest he becomes a laughing stock to the children of Isreal”.
We are a free State and as such should not be forced to agree to the delineating factors in religions or culture-the well being of an individual first before religion or culture.
Wetin the young girl know biko? When she is bought ice cream and sweets? Of course she will say yes!!! She is just a child!!! If she says yes to been shot with a gun does that make it alright just because she consented? Let’s be sincere and not narrow-minded.
If early marriage is the solution to the listed questions here http://www.naijapundit.com/news/yerima-responds-to-critics-of-early-marriage-says-i-will-slap-the-demon-out-of-your-head, then I must say Nigeria has a long way to go.
I say this:
We speak for our children because we are their voice. We speak for the best interest of Nigeria. We are Nigeria and we do NOT have Demons in our heads.