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Nigeria - Register Customary Marriage

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Procedure[edit]

Under customary law, marriages are arranged between families, and the prospective suitor is often required to pay a bride price to the bride's family. The steps leading up to customary marriage are marked by public ceremonies which, to some extent, provide evidence of die marriage.

The value of such evidence is severaly diminished because it places reliance on the memory of persons who witnessed or participated in the ceremonies. With the passage of time such memory becomes dim and unreliable.

The by-laws have been adopted requires a customary law husband to register the marriage within one month of its celebration.

There are essential and formal requirements for the celebration of valid customary law marriages. Although the details of such requirements vary from one locality to another, the broad principles are sometimes similar.

While in some areas child betrothal is rampant, marriage does not in fact take place until the parties have attained the age of puberty.

it was held that non-registration of the customary law marriage in question in accordance with section 2(e) of the Declaration rendered it invalid

The overall picture of efforts to register customary law marriages is unsatisfactory.

  • First, there is no systematic and compulsory system of registration in some parts of the country.
  • Second, even in those areas where the Local Government authorities are empowered to make by-laws on registration of marriages, the exercise of that power is optional. The result is that a large number of Local Governments have not yet made any by-law in this respect.
  • Third, where by-laws for registration are in force, the resulting record may be of doubtful validity because the Registrar can only record such particulars of the marriage as are supplied to him. He does not record facts which are either within his personal knowledge or certified as true in a certificate.

It is hoped that an efficient and compulsory system for the registration of customary law marriages will eventually be devised and adopted throughout the country. The existence of such a system would help to clarify the point at which marriage is established. It would also solve (he problems arising from the present requirement of strict proof of customary law and marriage.



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Required Documents[edit]

1.One (1) passport of each of the applicant

2.Birth Certificate or Declaration of Age of both applicants

3.Identification documents for both applicants

4.Certificate or letter of identification from state of origin (Nigerians only)

5.For Marriage that involve non citizens, applicants in addition should also present

6.Written application for special marriage license

7.Copy of passport (Non Nigerian Citizen)

8.Valid visa


Office Locations & Contacts[edit]

The Federal Marriage Registry

Federal Ministry of Interior

Block F, Old Federal Secretariat,

Area 1, P.M.B. 7007, Garki, Abuja

Telephone: 09-6713526,

Fax: 09-6713526.

E-mail: info@interior.gov.ng

Website: http://www.interior.gov.ng


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Eligibility[edit]

Adults twenty one (21) years and above who want to make a life time commitment to each other and would like to customary be recognized.



Fees[edit]

Fees vary basing on where marriage is registered.



Validity[edit]

As long as the both parties are alive and have not obtained a decree of annulment or an official order of divorce.



Documents to Use[edit]

Please attach documents that can be used by people. e.g. links



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Sample Documents[edit]

Please attach sample completed documents that would help other people.



Processing Time[edit]

Please explain processing time taken in obtaining the document/certificate.



Related Videos[edit]

Videos explaining the procedure or to fill the applications. 
Attach videos using the following tag <&video type="website">video ID|width|height<&/video&> from external websites.
Please remove the "&" inside the tags during implementation.
Website = allocine, blip, dailymotion, facebook, gametrailers, googlevideo, html5, metacafe, myspace, revver, 
sevenload, viddler, vimeo, youku, youtube
width = 560, height = 340, Video ID = Can be obtained from the URL of webpage where the video is displayed.
e.g In the following url "http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y0US7oR_t3M" Video ID is "Y0US7oR_t3M". 
	



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Instructions[edit]

1.The customary law husband or wife must ensure that they both meet the age requirement;

2.The customary law husband or wife should be submitted in person;

3.The customary law husband or wife can either be nationals or foreigners;

4.Foreign pattern must be legally authorized to stay in the country;

5.The customary law husband or wife must have stayed in the district where marriage is intended to be celebrated for at least fifteen (15) days;

6.A marriage will only be accepted if there is no objection from family members, relatives or any other person and is there is no any other lawful obstacle to the marriage;

7.Both applicants must not be in any other kind of marriage to any other person apart from the person with whom the proposed marriage is to be contracted

8.The customary law husband who wish to marry in the marriage registry must take note of the activities that take place on particular days in the registry before selecting their marriage date;

9.Notify the Local Government authorities registry of your wedding date early enough;

10.Wedding may be conducted on non specified days on an additional fee;

11.Notice period is always twenty one (21) days;

12.Each of the partner must have at least two (2) witnesses during the marriage ceremony;

13.You do not need witnesses during the swearing in ceremony;

14.customary law husband must take note of the clothes accepted during a customary marriage ceremony;

15.A marriage ceremony should be conducted within the given period of time after registration;

16.Foreign applicants must be legally authorized to stay in the country;

17.The parties to a customary-law marriage must possess the capacity under that law to marry each other.




Required Information[edit]

1. Name and address of each applicant

2.Sex and age of each applicant

3.Nationality of each applicant

4.Particulars of parents of each applicant

5.Particulars of witnesses



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Need for the Document[edit]

The Local Government Laws in most states of the federation in Nigeria,authorizes local authorities to make by-laws for the registration of customary law marriages within their respective jurisdiction. This is so because there is no principle of customary law which requires the recording of customary law marriages in Nigeria.

Some of the by-laws do not make registration compulsory nor prescribe any penalty for failure to comply with its requirements. The overall picture of efforts to register customary law marriages is unsatisfactory.First, there is no systematic and compulsory system of registration in some parts of the country.

Second, even in those areas where the Local Government authorities are empowered to make by-laws on registration of marriages, the exercise of that power is optional. The result is that a large number of Local Governments have not yet made any by-law in this respect.

There are various steps leading up to and including the marriage itself are marked by public ceremonies which, to some extent, provide evidence of die marriage.

It is hoped that an efficient and compulsory system for the registration of customary law marriages will eventually be devised and adopted throughout the country.The existence of such a system would help to clarify the point at which marriage is established. It would also solve (he problems arising from the present requirement of strict proof of customary law and marriage.


Information which might help[edit]

There are three types of marriages--customary, Islamic and civil--in Nigeria. The rights of women vary according to the type of marriage and the region of the country. Marriages adhering to customary or civil law are valid throughout the country. In the northern states, marriages under Islamic law are legally recognized. Pursuant to customary and Islamic law, marriages may be polygamous and registration is not required.



Other uses of the Document/Certificate[edit]

Please explain what are other uses of obtaining this document/certificate.
e.g. Birth Certificate can be used as proof of identity.



External Links[edit]

http://www.onlinenigeria.com/marriages-in-nigeria/Customary-Law-Marriage/registration-of-customary-marriage.asp

http://www.onlinenigeria.com/marriages-in-nigeria/Registration-Of-Customary-Marriage/

http://www.refworld.org/docid/3df4be791c.html



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Others[edit]

More information which might help people.