Emir Sanusi: Poverty and Regulated Polygamy – the Gains and the Loss

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We salute the courage of Emir of Kano for looking into the causes of terrorism especially the use of children suicide bombers. One of it is procreation without care and by extension the abuse of polygamy among the poor.

Divorce rate in northern Nigeria is the highest. A serial monogamist can avoid polygamy to procreate miscreants. In fact, divorced women shifting husbands stand high chance of not looking after children.

Our northern brothers should be encouraged to endure marital life whether monogamy or polygamy and the authority should put a law in place that punishes any man that divorces woman at will.

A case of a man that had divorced 75 women was cited by a delegate from Zamfara state during the national confab held in 2014. An abuse of highest degree!

Poverty is not directly proportional to irresponsibility. I know of a former CMD who was not responsible to how his biological child became a doctor and the guy changed his surname till date. The word poor or rich is a relative term.

The standard used in determining rich man or a poor man depends on individual perception, societal norms, environment, educational status,  international exposure etc.

A man with a stable monthly salary of N200,000 is still poor to an educated lady in Lagos. The man cannot even marry one wife while his counterpart in Osun with ‘unstable’ salary of N100,000per month is living comfortable with two wives, six children. All responsibilities are well taken care of.

Similarly, a Saudi man with fine car may not yet be certified to marry one wife while a roadside vulcaniser in Nigeria is happily married with kids.

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The orientation or mind set of an individual or society is the major factor responsible for responsible/irresponsible parents whether monogamy or polygamy.

This does not mean the basic requirements for marrying women should be ignored: accommodation, feeding, clothing and educating the children.

However, between the devil and deep blue sea, we now have a problem of the rich running away from polygamy and the poor ready for it with insufficient capacity.

How many rich men’s wives agree with ease to accommodate co-wives? This is REAL war of the rich men especially among the educated ones. Many of these rich men have concubines and pretend as loyal monogamists to their wives. An anomaly in Islam.

Before we adopt the Saudi laws let us look at the outcome of some of these laws: About 5.6 millions Saudis remained unmarried past marriage age. 3million men at average age of 40years and 2.26million women at average age of 36years in a total population of 32million people.

The major reason is because the ceiling of demands by women have been raised. (check Saudi gazette,  Riyadh Jan 2017).

Now in Nigeria, according to latest statistics from Federal Ministry of Women Affairs and Social Development 4 in every 10 ladies aged between 26-39 are unmarried.

There is an alarming number of unmarried ladies aged between 28 and 39years.

As our Emir makes move to eradicate miscreants through regulated polygamy, he should also not increase the number of unmarried women in our society.

Bankole K. T.

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