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We are Working to Legislate Against Early Marriages – Emir Muhammadu Sanusi II



Emir Muhammadu Sanusi II

The Kano Emirate Council and other stakeholders are working to legislate against early marriage and other harmful family planning practices to address the burden of Vesico-Vaginal Fistula (VVF) and other reproductive health practices.

The Emir of Kano, Malam Muhammadu Sanusi II, made this known at his investiture as the Grand Patron for Women and Children Health in Kano on Monday.

He said religious and traditional institutions should reflect on the challenges women and adolescent girls in Nigeria, especially in the north, where reproductive indicators are not encouraging.

“Women are married in Northern Nigeria at a tender age thereby leading her to lose her life, the child and the indices are there for each state. Some people attribute the death and challenges to God but we know that (God does) not dislike us,’’ he said.

“Why is it that the indices are worst in the north? Why is it that the northern states have high rate of poverty?’’ the monarch queried.

The Emir therefore challenged traditional and religious institutions to embrace the modern family health practices to reverse the burden of these challenges in the region.

According to him, some of the Islamic countries such as Morocco, Malaysia, and Egypt are not having these challenges despite the fact that we have one holy Qur’an as a guide to our life.

He therefore tasked Islamic scholars to adopt the new method widely within the Islamic jurisprudence with a view to enhance the life of the people.

The first class traditional ruler said the committee had already been established and it has the cooperation of the state government to pass its recommendation into law.

Besides, he appealed to the police and courts to ensure that the law is effectively implemented.

He said family law practices that encourage the rights of the women would be addressed in the propped law.

Earlier, Prof. Babatunde Osotimehin, the Executive Director, United Nations Population Fund (UNFPA), said the poor literacy indicators fuel the high rates of maternal and child deaths and illness in the region.

He added that surveys highlights linkages between the level of education of the mother and her corresponding health behaviour.

Osotimehin said the low retention of girls in school continues to serve as one of the social determinants of poor adolescent health outcomes.

“To change this, there is the need to ensure that girls are able to stay in school and pursue their education, regardless of whether they live in rural or urban areas. This is essential for their well-being and a critical foundation for the health and prosperity of families, communities and nations.’’

He said when girls are able to define their lives and exercise their rights, they not only enjoy better health, but they are able to contribute to national development as economic actors and entrepreneurs.

The executive director said this would ensure that Kano state harnesses its demographic dividend from its largely youthful population.


  1. Sugabelly

    January 10, 2017 at 7:05 am

    After marrying his grand daughter’s age mate like all the women his age have finished he actually said this with a straight face. ??? What a hypocrite.

    • .....just saying

      January 10, 2017 at 8:21 am

      By the way Sugabelly, any update on your case with the rapist? I hope that guy was not let off the hook

    • afnan

      January 10, 2017 at 8:54 am

      well actually, the woman he married was not underage and also, he doesnt have grandchildren that old either. This is the first Northern man who has taken a step forward to put an end to this and instead of supporting him, you’re calling him hypocrite, names, this and that.
      chai!!! 9jerians nawa o. if person do, you go him do. if e no do, na wahala again o! abeg take it easy ehn

    • ob

      January 10, 2017 at 10:01 am

      Do not accept mediocrity please. He married an 18 year old (just barely 18 oh), a man who is well over 50 years. Can you just hear yourself. It’s this kind of mediocrity that we often exhibit when we praise our government for doing just the bare minimum for us when they’re obligated to do just that and more.
      He should marry his age appropriate ladies. He is a prey!

    • Fleur

      January 10, 2017 at 6:09 pm

      Admirable. At least the law will help curb your appetite too.

  2. Bubu

    January 10, 2017 at 8:03 am

    Real hypocrite, return the child in your house to her parents, see how he married off his own kids to young men. Why didn’t you give them to babas??? Mscheeeeew.

  3. .....just saying

    January 10, 2017 at 8:20 am

    The first way to have done this was by not marrying an under age in the first place. Leaders need to lead by example in this country

    • Lala

      January 10, 2017 at 1:27 pm

      He married an 18 year old. What has is own age got to do with it? If Mick Jagger does it, we have no issues or the extremely young Brazilian models who marry money bags in the west, no body complains about the gap in age as long as both parties are 18 and over.

  4. keke driver

    January 10, 2017 at 8:21 am

    This guy is sooo shameless, what a hypocrite!!!

  5. Sansarai

    January 10, 2017 at 8:41 am

    @commenters above: let’s not get carried away please. I think we would agree that what two consenting adults, yes, ADULTS, do is their business. The Emir did not marry a minor – the woman was 18 when he married her and he doesn’t have any grandchildren that are up to that age (heck, I’m not aware that he has grandkids at all). Your comments reek of prejudice. Let’s try and be objective please. Y’all are acting like he married a 12-yr old

    • #Proudnigerian

      January 10, 2017 at 10:47 am

      What does an 18 yr old girl know about life?? Please enlighten me??

    • Lala

      January 10, 2017 at 1:34 pm

      18 is the legal age for consent, period. Yesterday on this blog, there was a post on early marriage and one of those who commented noted that she got married at 18. No body complained, now because this man is from the North we all are complaining. I’d rather he married her than have her be an aristo chic.

      Pray tell, how old are the Unilag babes and other Nigerian female students we see hanging around old rich Nigerian men for 50k.

      Sanusi has not committed any crime by Nigerian and International law relating to underage marriage.

    • Cindy

      January 10, 2017 at 7:38 pm

      But he knew he was going to marry her before she clocked 18 abi? So he was eyeing an underage girl and already had her betrothed.

  6. Bey

    January 10, 2017 at 9:00 am

    I laugh in Swahili, is this man for real. After enslaving a young girl that probably doesn’t know better and just wants to please her family and her grandhorseband.
    A girl that he married before she’s even had the chance to finish her education. What do u know at that age pls.

  7. Awiase

    January 10, 2017 at 9:08 am

    Then Mr Emir,you should be prosecuted too.

  8. Ethio

    January 10, 2017 at 9:31 am

    So an 18yr old dated, got proposed to and agreed to marry a 57yr old King. Pls tell us how many 50 year old sons in law he has. Yusra chineke mekwalu gi ebele

  9. Blessed Child

    January 10, 2017 at 9:37 am

    Emir. Goodmorning sir. Please ensure that this is done. I know that being married too early is really not good for the mother and child especially syccologically and health wise.. l also wish you luck on this with other Emirs and other powerfull personalities from the North who enjoy this wicked act. Marry this girls at 13 or 14 years and divorce them at 17 years. Where do expect them to starts from. Thank you sir.

  10. Tosin

    January 10, 2017 at 10:20 am

    Amen to that! I trust the emir and yes to expanded health for everyone. Women can be more and do more and there should be no oppression.

  11. LemmeRant

    January 10, 2017 at 10:58 am

    But he’s bride wasn’t underage? Where do you people get making false claims like that.

    Maybe you think he’s too old for him or she’s to young for her. That is a different matter. That doesn’t mean she’s underage. I don’t think there’s any part of the law which says your birde has to be 26+ before you can marry her. But there are definitely laws against underage marriage and she’s not underage.

    I say this because Sanusi here is one of the few people in Nigeria that can actually prevent underage marriages. It has to start from somewhere. Whether you think she’s too young for marriage or not is purely your opinion.

    By law that woman is an adult and she should be treated as one.
    Now if I’m a 50+yrs would I marry an 18yr old lady. Nope. I doesn’t sit well with me but that doesn’t mean she’s underage.

    Please learn to remove sentiments from your arguments. I hope he gets to achieve his goal. As he’s more influential than all your comments combined (even with the likes)

    • See

      January 10, 2017 at 6:20 pm

      Thank you for being objective.

  12. legal Age

    January 10, 2017 at 1:32 pm

    18 years is not underage in Nigeria. Don’t twist the facts/truth.

  13. Godschild

    January 10, 2017 at 7:22 pm

    Talk less Act more!

  14. madman

    January 10, 2017 at 9:33 pm

    His last wife was groomed since she was 13. Arrangements for marriage were made way before she turned 18years old.

  15. tunmi

    January 10, 2017 at 10:26 pm

    2017 may just be THE year for Nigeria!!!!! He actually said all these??? It’s more than a social. Media post, its serious on-the-ground action. I do hope he is able to achieve them.

  16. nnenne

    January 11, 2017 at 3:19 am

    Hope Nigerian, as a whole, will also discuss polygamy, over population and its effects, to social amenities like electricity and clean water , health, education, employment, crime rates . Early marriage is not the only problem.

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