“It serves her right’, ‘It is not fair’, ‘She deserves to die’. These and many others are the reactions of many Nigerians, and comments that have gone viral on the social media over the death sentence passed on Mariam Sanda who was convicted for killing her husband, Bilyaminu Mohammed Bello, in 2017.
Maryam was accused of killing her husband over alleged infidelity in November 2017. It was gathered that during an argument late in the night she stabbed him several times leading to his death.
Meanwhile, an investigation by Daily Trust has found that since November 19, 2017, over 50 cases of spousal killings across the country have been recorded. A total of 36 housewives have reportedly been killed by their husbands while 17 husbands were killed by their wives.
Mrs Yakubu (not real name) said, “we should learn to control our rage and anger because a minute’s action in anger can ruin one’s life forever man or woman.”
An on air personality and media assistant to the Deputy Speaker of the House of Representatives, Omolara Wise, on her Facebook wall, advised Nigerians in abusive relationships saying, “Don’t kill him. Leave him alive. Don’t kill her. Leave her alive. Don’t go to the kitchen. Go to the door. Don’t pick a knife. Pick your luggage. Walk away if you can’t handle it.”
She added that “… if all your mind tells you to end the life of your spouse, if hatred and bile have run so deep and you have become suicidal, please seek help,” adding that if you kill your spouse, chances are you will die too as the law will catch up with you.
Abuja-based lawyer, Barr Gloria Ewa, said if one’s right is been trampled upon in a marriage, the parties can approach the court to dissolve it instead of hanging on because of what society will say.
“Legally, there is nothing bounding a man or a woman to stay in an abusive relationship because, no person has the right to take the life of another person.
It is enshrined in the constitution that everyone has the right to live and no one because marriage has been contracted has right to take any life.”
She said, if a marriage has become a threat, the right is been trampled upon, the parties involve have the right to approach the court so that it can be dissolved instead of staying back because of what the society will say.
“In approaching a court, there are two stages of divorce, that is, decree nisi which is before pronouncing the divorce whereby you both can go back home and see if it grievances can be settled and this usually takes three months.
“But where the decree nisi is not working, the judge will pronounce a decree absolute and that is when the divorce is final. Under Christendom, even though God hates divorce he doesn’t hate the individual. And no culture in Nigeria also campaigns for anyone to stay back in an abusive marriage,” she said.