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Bearing burden of children upkeep alone

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I was just going through Vanguard daily and I saw your column which I cherish. I am a civil servant I got married in 1992. My husband and I lived happily until one day when his elder brother died. After the burial, my husband told me that he is going to marry the widow because it was his right.

When I said no, he asked me to leave our matrimonial home with my five children. It’s about seven years now and he has not been giving me any money for maintenance. I have been suffering alone to feed and train our children. Please help me, I am sick and tired of doing all this alone.Thanks and God bless.

— Sandra

It’s a pity that you are going through this kind of experience.I wonder why your husband decided to take his brothers widow as his second wife when the two of you had a happy married life according to you.

Although you did not disclose the type of marriage you contracted. Did you marry in a registry or you contracted a customary marriage? If your marriage was contracted in a registry, it means that it is a statutory marrige and as such it is an offence for your husband to take a second wife.

But if your marriage was conducted under native law and customs,it may not be out of place if he decides to marry his brothers widow because some customs permit this.However,whatever the case may be,it is wrong for him to neglect the upkeep of the five children that you had together. As I said earlier,the type of marrige you contracted would determine the remedy you can get under the law.So I think you need to contact a lawyer who would tell you what to do in this instance.

Between next of kin and  intestate

Please be kind enough to educate me on the power of ‘’A WILL’’  and ‘’NEXT OF KIN’’ with reference to the following posers:1- what happens where there is A WRITTEN ‘’Next of kin’’ (official) BUT, NO WILL- (Intestate)? 2-where there is NEXT OF KIN, (officially mentioned), intestate, BUT the siblings from other wives went ahead to use the deceased property/(ies) as collateral for Bank loan and the end defaulted in repayment,- leading to the seizures of such property/(ies) 3-IF the above occurs in a State in Nigeria where THE WILL ACTS,1837 is still being used and practised, will the location of such property/(ies) determine the type of  LAW that would/should apply and use? 4, Under intestate, can any other family member exercise any RIGHT WITHOUT THE CONSENT OF THE NEXT OF KIN?  Bright-O.

Due to space constraint answers to these questions would be provided next week.

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