DIVORCE – A carpenter, Saheed Oyepeju has told Ile Tuntun Customary Court, Mapo, Ibadan, Oyo State, that he wants to end his 16-year-old marriage to his wife, Toyin, a hairdresser.
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Saheed in his suit alleged that his wife is a liar, fetish and a witch. He thus prayed the court to terminate their relationship and grant him custody of their four children.
He said: “I detest my wife because she’s fetish and devilish.
“We started having misunderstandings after she had our second child. I took a second wife around this time who became pregnant for me. But my wife sent her packing through diabolical means. She moved in with another man whom she took my pregnancy to. She came back after many years and handed over my child to me.
“I again dated another lady and my wife bragged that she belonged to an occultic group which feast on human flesh and thus threatened to kill my girlfriend. She made her threat real a month after. My girlfriend, without taken ill, died.
“I took yet another wife whom she beat blue-black and sent packing.
“Our home became hot because we were always fighting. She later packed her belongings out of my house and left for her parents’ place at Ikire. She came for the children after a while. I came back from work and met an empty house. I called her to know if the children were with her but she denied ever setting her eyes on them, but I knew she was lying.
“I was advised to make a report at the police station which I did. My parents, worried, decided to pay her parents a visit and make moves at settling our differences.
“On getting there, they met our children playing under the tree.
“My parents spoke with hers parents and did all they could to reconcile us. She moved back to my place with the children but refused to greet me or have any interaction with me.
“The last time we fought, she roughened my shirt, hit me on the chest and cursed me. She later tore my shirt into shreds and vowed to kill me.
“I, therefore, left home, moved into a new apartment and took a new wife.
“I pray for our children’s custody because she has not been taking good care of them. I have never shirked my responsibility of taking care of our children. The last time I went to pay them a visit, the house was surrounded with bush while the children’s hair was overgrown and looking untidy. I had to take them to the barbing saloon for a cut. I later learnt that their mother made them hawk pepper which is displeasing to me,” the plaintiff concluded.
On her part, Toyin pleaded not guilty to the charges presented against her and also refused that her husband have custody of their children.
She gave her reasons thus: “My lord, I don’t agree to divorce not because my husband is responsible or dependable, but because I don’t want our children to suffer.
“Our problem started after I had our second child. My husband started having strings of lovers and was in the habit of deserting me and the children sometimes for two years or more.
“He was not bothered about the children’s welfare while their education was not a priority to him. I have been solely responsible for their upkeep. All he knows to do as a man is to sleep around,” the defendant said.
The court president, Chief Olasunkanmi Agbaje, after listening to both parties stated that more evidence would be needed.
He, therefore, adjourned the case till October 31 and ordered the duo to come to court with their parents and four children.