A 17-year-old girl named Fatima Baba has appealed to the Niger Child Right Protection Agency to dissolve her one-month-old marriage.
Fatima is married to 35-year-old Salihu M, said that she was no longer in love with her husband and also wants the marriage dissolved so she can further her education.
“I was given in marriage to Salihu by my family, who thought I will have a better life with him. I do not want this marriage; I do not love this man. I want a divorce because I want to go to school and it is only when I am divorced that I can return to school,” she said.
Her husband, Salihu also replied saying that he married his wife legally, and with the consent of her family.
“At first, my wife was happy with the marriage until she suddenly changed her mind and opted for a divorce. I still love my wife and I want to spend my life with her, but if she wants a divorce, I have no objection. I cannot force her to remain in the union,” he said.
The Director-General of the Niger Child Right Protection, Maryam Kolo, was full of praise for Fatima for having the courage to seek for divorce, and gave a two-week ultimatum to dissolve the marriage.
“If you fail to do so within the two weeks, the agency will file for divorce on behalf of the girl in a Sharia Court,” she said.
She further warned parents against giving out their daughter early for marriage.