LEGAL IMPLICATION OF DISSOLUTION OF STATUTORY MARRIAGE IN A DUAL MARRIAGE: A CULTURAL RELATIVIST EXAMINATION
Keywords:Customary marriage, Statutory marriage, Divorce, Culture, Cultural Relativism
Marriage is a universally recognised institution. It is the bedrock of the family and smallest unit of society. The procedure and manner of its celebration differ from one society to another. In some societies, a valid marriage is one contracted only between persons of the opposite sex. However, in some other societies, persons of the same sex can contract a legitimate marriage. In Nigeria, only persons of the opposite sex can enter into a marital relationship. This paper explores two types of marriage - customary marriage and statutory marriage. Quite a number of the marriages in Nigeria between the same couples are contracted both under customary law and the Marriage Act. In a situation where there are irreconcilable differences leading to a divorce, would the dissolution of one type of marriage have any effect on the other? This is the crux of this paper. An analysis of the two marriages and divorce proceedings were made, divergent opinions of different learned authors were explored, laws and decisions of courts were considered in order to examine the effect of dissolution of one type of marriage on the other type of marriage.