Tuesday, May 18, 2010

Nigerian Senator Defends Under-Age Marriage

May 18, 2010 on Al-Jazeera English
A Nigerian senator has come under fire for marrying an Egyptian girl who is alleged to be 36 years his junior.

Sani Ahmed Yerima, 49, is said to have paid $100,000 as dowry for the 13-year-old girl.

But he has defended his decision as the prospect for facing prosecution looms, saying he followed the teaching of the prophet Mohammed.


  1. Clearly, clearly, it is not possible to have "absolute freedom of religion" in the constitution. Were I to come up with a religion that practices human sacrifice, for instance, that would clash with existing laws on homicide.

    It's extremely bad thinking.

  2. .... and multiple wives?  These men (whether Muslim, Mormon or anything else) are not forming relationships with women as equals, they are keeping them like possessions, like cattle or slaves.

  3. I was thinking the same thing that Dan wrote.  It would be absurd to actually make it where citizens can do anything they wish as long as it's supposedly part of their religion.  People could do whatever act they wish and say it's part of their religious beliefs as a defense in court.  Gangs can develop their own religion that would allow them rob, kill, and rape, and then the government wouldn't be able to do anything about it.  No, I don't think the government would tie their hands that badly.  Of course I don't know much about the law in that country and there may be some minor leeway for certain aspects of major established religions.  I personally would hope not though.

    As for what Forumlogic said, I agree with him too.  Men being able to having multiple wives but women unable to have multiple husbands is clear inequality.  To most of us, polygamy comes across as a method for wealthy men to satisfy their sexual pleasure to have multiple women at the expense of the women themselves, while all the while making it sound completely justifiable via religion. Most religions justify being able to have multiple wives saying that they are helping the women by giving them a home, food, and etc just as long as the husband has the finances to cover it.  It's even common that very wealthy people in those social norms to be pressured to take more wives to "help out" with giving these "poor, helpless" women a home.  It's really horribly sad.

    ~Will Fuqua


  4. Think of it this way though- their living conditions are completely different to ours in the 1st world- marrying young girls is practical in many ways - so no matter how disgusting we may think it is- we shouldn't just look at it from our western perspective and judge.

  5. Well, if they are so concerned about the well-being of these young women, why don't they support them in ways other than marriage?  For heaven's sake, the young 13 yr old girl is certainly young enough to be adopted, and something equivalent that did not involve sex and being indentured to the man.

  6. Nigeria, vacation destination for pedicures, pedophiles, and polygamy.

  7. R€LIGION $TINKS OF MONE¥May 19, 2010 at 2:06 PM

    Ofcourse we should, don´t think for a minute that these people don´t judge and look down their noses at us. 

    Lets not forget that Nigeria is also Christian.

  8. What's the difference between what this senator is doing and what the Catholic priests are doing to children?  He should go to prision for raping that poor girl.