By Wahab Abdulah
A Lagos based engineer, Olakunle Olajide recentlyÂ rejected pleas to live with his estranged wife, Moyosore Olajide, who is a banker.
Engr. Olajide who sued for divorceÂ alleged that his wife refused his persuasion to stay in Lagos after she was transferred to Abuja by the Central Bank ofÂ Nigeria, CBN, insisted on aÂ divorce , even ifÂ he would forgive her, the court must first separate them.
According to Olakunle , who appeared before Justice Elfreda Williams Dawodu of an Ikeja High CourtÂ recently, said his estranged wife did not bother about his welfare, when she bluntly ignoredÂ his plea to stay back in Lagos after she was transferred to Abuja in 1996.
The manÂ stunnedÂ the court when he expressed his anger over his continued relationship with Mrs Olajide andÂ said, â€œI want our marriage dissolved though I am a Christian, and I know that God doesnâ€™t allow divorce ,but I waited this longÂ Â because of my children. I donâ€™t want them to be psychologically affected by our problems.â€
When the presiding judge, Justice Williams-Dawodu heard his response, she said, â€œI believe that the court is empowered to reconcile themÂ when there is the need for that.â€Â But the petitioner who seemed to haveÂ made up his mindÂ opined that, God doesnâ€™t allow for divorce, but he canâ€™t rescindÂ his decision.
He had earlier told the courtÂ that trouble started in their marriage when his wife who works with the CBNÂ was transferred to Abuja. He told the court that he did notÂ want her to go to Abuja because it would affectÂ their young children adversely and strainÂ their relationship, but his wife was defiant.
â€œTo show that I was not in support ofÂ her transfer, I refused to give her transport fare from Lagos to Abuja, but she eventually left in October 1996.â€
He also informed the court that his wife never bothered to come back to Lagos and see what was happening in her matrimonial home for three years until one late night in 1999,she came from Abuja.â€œI was shocked when I saw her that night because I wasnâ€™t sureÂ why she came back after three years, I refused to let her in, butÂ after entreaties from neighbours, I allowed her in but on the promise that she will leave in the morning because I hadÂ to go to work,â€ he told the court.
However, Mrs Olajideâ€™s lawyer, responded that she left for Abuja when she heard that her husband was having extra marital affairs .
Mr Olajide denied the allegation ,sayingÂ that he never hadÂ Â any extra marital. And there was no time I apologized to my wife and took responsibility for the crack in our marriage.â€
When asked whyÂ he refused to take her (wife) back despite all pleas, he said, â€œshe deserted me… she never looked for me, I was the one who looked for her …Â . I have always been responsible for my children; I didÂ because I wanted a relationship with my children.
He however flared up when he was askedÂ , â€œdo you know she still loves you and wouldnâ€™t be a party to this divorce? He said, â€œShe left me for 12 years although I have forgiven her, I donâ€™t love her anymore and I want to live my life without her.
I cannot live with her any longer. I donâ€™t think she cares any more …only that she doesnâ€™t want to live with the stigma as a divorcee. She only wants to keep my name and still maintain her freedom.
â€œMy lord, she has never been reallyÂ remorseful andÂ she accused me of several things withoutÂ clarification.Â I would like the marriage to be dissolved but ifÂ inÂ future weÂ come together, so be it.â€
The court adjourned further hearing in the case, April 14, 2010.