A 44-year-old woman, Susan Lijadu, on Tuesday told a Lagos Island Customary Court, Lagos, that her husband, Folarin forced her to make a covenant with him. Folarin, 47, had in April urged the court to dissolve his 20-year-old marriage for alleged lack of trust and love.
Susan, a mother of four, told the court that their marital problem started in year 2000 when her husband became blind as a result of a motor accident.
She said that he became suicidal, aggressive and very jealous and in 2013 he forced her into making a covenant with him. “Since he became blind everything about him has changed. He once tried to kill himself but I pleaded with him and assured him that everything will be well.
“He also became aggressive toward me and one day he nearly strangled me to death and if not for our neighbours who came to my rescue I would have been dead.
“Three years ago he ordered me to buy a cockerel, three colanuts, bittercola and alligator pepper. I was stripped naked in the presence of one herbalist from Ondo State.
“I was told to swear that no other man will ever see my nakedness or have any sexual intercourse with me except my husband.
“All the items were buried in a hole dug in front of our room,’’ she said.
Susan told the court that her husband, who did not make the same covenant with her, had now impregnated one of their tenants and wants to divorce her.
“My husband wants to dump me after putting an embargo on me,’’ she said.
Folarin denied forcing his wife to swear an oath, adding that she was the one who urged him to make her take the oath and that he did not swear with her.
He said that he filed for the dissolution of their marriage when he could not control her.
“When I became incapacitated, I sent my wife to computer school and opened a shop for her to enable her take care of the home financially.
“She stopped going to shop and started selling petrol at the junction of our house which I did not support.
“During one of our arguments in December 2015, she bathed me with kerosene and threatened to set me ablaze.
“I did not impregnate our tenant, I am not interested in the marriage again. I want a divorce,’’ Folarin said.
The Court President, Mr Awos Awoshola, reprimanded them on the oath taking.
“No one can predict what will happen tomorrow, we humans are always changing. We want something today, that thing might become what we detest tomorrow,” Awoshola said.
Awoshola added that before the court could dissolve the marriage, the covenant must be broken and that the two parties must provide evidence that the oath had been revoked.
He ordered both parties to maintain peace and adjourned the case till May 24 for further hearing.