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TAKE ACTION: United Nations: Stop The Nigerian Senate From Making Under-Age Marriage The Law!

World  (tags: ethics, 'HUMANRIGHTS!', 'CIVILLIBERTIES!', children, violence, world, politics )

- 1110 days ago -
Please sign this petition, which could be your small contribution to ensuring huge positive change in Nigerian law and protecting many generations of Nigerian children, now and in the future, from sexual exploitation.

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Beverly Fjobhunting (86)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 5:53 pm
On the 18th of July 2013, the Senate voted on an amendment of Section 29 of the Nigerian Constitution, the relevant part which was: Section 29 (1) Any citizen of Nigeria of full age who wishes to renounce his Nigerian citizenship shall make a declaration prescribed manner for the renunciation. Sub-section 4 states: For the purposes of subsection (1) of this section. (a) "full age" means the age of eighteen years and above; (b) any woman who is married shall be deemed to be of full age.

A majority of Senators -- totalling (up to) two-thirds of members as required for a constitutional amendment -- voted to delete clause (b). However, a request for a second vote was made by Senator Ahmed Yerima on the basis that the deletion of that clause was discriminatory against Muslim women, in that Islamic Law permits females to marry under the age of 18. The amendment was once again put to vote -- after eventual concession by the Senate President, following an initial objection to a deviation from Parliamentary rules on voting. A majority of Senators once again voted to delete clause (b). However, on this occasion, the required two-thirds majority was not attained, and the amendment was in effect defeated. Our position is that this clause legitimises the exploitation of female children since the effect of clause (b) quite simply is: a. To deem a female to be of-age, simply by virtue of the act of marriage; b. To thus legitimise the marriage of minors. c. To neutralise the provisions of Sections 21 and 31 of the Child Rights Act 2003, which serve to make unlawful marriage to and indeed intercourse with minors, defined simply as a child under the age of 18 years. Whilst it is acknowledged that this vote did not introduce Section 29 (4)b, since it was already in the constitution, it has however highlighted the need for legal protection for minors in the light of what is clearly a huge gap in Nigerian law.

Simply put, the law as it stands today, provides no protection for a minor being subjected to sexual intercourse regardless of age, as long as the same is done within the boundaries of marriage, even though she may not have the capacity to understand or appreciate the nature of the marriage contract. It is important to state that this matter is not simply part of a Muslim-Christian schism, and it is noted that the votes in the Senate both for and against, appeared to cross both ethnic and religious lines. What is most important is that the effect of the retention of Section 29 (4)b will leave children all over Nigeria, whether Northern, Southern, Christian, Muslim or Animist with no protection from exploitation which is happening and will continue until action is taken.

The effects of Child Marriages are well documented and one of the most visible effects being the prevalence of the horribly debilitating disease Vesico-Vaginal Fistula (VVF) amongst young females in Nigeria. 12,000 cases are reported yearly in Nigeria, most of which are young females of northern extraction. This is not counting the unseen psychological and social cost inherent in mortgaging the lives of a generation of young children.

What we ask for is a universally applicable law protecting minors by defining a minimum marriageable age, since the simple fact is that without legislation, young children are legally exposed to sexual exploitation.


GGmaSheila D. (191)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 5:54 pm
Signed earlier and noted now. Thank you.

jess b (26)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 6:11 pm
signed already

Animae C. (514)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 6:13 pm
You have already signed the petition
" United Nations: Stop The Nigerian Senate From Making Under-Age Marriage The Law!"
with 121,342 supporters
28,658 NEEDED

Mary T. (354)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 6:18 pm
so sad for these young girls if this becomes law. they'll never get an education, only be a slave to their "husband"
Signed & noted - thank you Beverly

Stuart Thomas (503)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 6:27 pm
Noted and
Signed with 121,369 supporters

Thank you for the posting, Beverly.

Kit B. (276)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 7:12 pm

Children being forced into marriage with grown (physically grown) men. This must stop we are living in a global community where too many are fighting for an 8th century world. It was not good then and is no better now.
Signed and shared

natasha salgado (713)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 9:25 pm
Signed earlier-noted

Rose Becke (140)
Thursday August 15, 2013, 10:44 pm
Thanks for signing

Alan Lambert (91)
Friday August 16, 2013, 1:33 am
Signed with signature #122000 and Noted

Peggy A. (0)
Friday August 16, 2013, 4:37 am

Caroline S. (80)
Friday August 16, 2013, 4:46 am
Signed of course. This makes my blood boil }}:-((

Mike M. (49)
Friday August 16, 2013, 5:08 am
with 122,124 supporters

Frans Badenhorst (582)
Friday August 16, 2013, 5:28 am
with 122,148 supporters
27,852 NEEDED

Ben Oscarsito (290)
Friday August 16, 2013, 6:09 am
Signed indeed!

Emma S. (238)
Friday August 16, 2013, 7:38 am
Done! Thanks, Beverly.

Aaron Bouchard (158)
Friday August 16, 2013, 7:45 am
signed and noted thanks

. (0)
Friday August 16, 2013, 8:10 am
Already signed that one. Thanks for sharing, Beverly. Underage marriage is disgusting and deprives girls of their education and childhoods.

. (0)
Friday August 16, 2013, 9:21 am
gladly signed

Bryna Pizzo (139)
Friday August 16, 2013, 12:22 pm
Thank you! (s, n, p, t)

Keith H. (0)
Friday August 16, 2013, 12:40 pm
Noted & signed

Apolonia Pl (399)
Friday August 16, 2013, 1:44 pm
Signed with 122,761 supporters, 27,239 NEEDED

Sheila D. (28)
Friday August 16, 2013, 2:00 pm
Noted and signed. Thanks, Beverly.

Dianna M. (16)
Friday August 16, 2013, 2:05 pm
Do you REALLY want to be known as a nation of pedophiles?

Jennifer Ward (40)
Friday August 16, 2013, 2:26 pm
Oh dear 'northern' Nigeria. Why do you not come out with the real cause? The north of Nigeria is Islamic. Boko Harem (Western education is forbidden) is constantly attacking the Christian south without cause, their aim is to establish Sharia law. Child 'marriage', apart from being paedophile's delight, is a good way of enslaving females. The whole world is in an uproar because of this ideology, time to stop indulging it.

S J. (133)
Friday August 16, 2013, 2:33 pm
Done with thanks, Beverly.

Birgit W. (159)
Friday August 16, 2013, 3:06 pm
Signed, thanks.

Hugo L. (255)
Friday August 16, 2013, 4:12 pm
Noted & signed, thanks Beverly

Andre Yokers (6)
Friday August 16, 2013, 5:07 pm
Protect the children!

Dori C. (17)
Friday August 16, 2013, 5:10 pm

Ellen Kent (0)
Friday August 16, 2013, 5:14 pm

Judy C. (109)
Friday August 16, 2013, 9:44 pm
Already signed. Thanks Beverly.

Colleen L. (3)
Friday August 16, 2013, 10:02 pm
No child should be forced into marriage. Petition signed. Thanks Beverly

Rehana VN (0)
Friday August 16, 2013, 10:33 pm
Where are the Childrens, Womens groups.Why is the UN's quiet. All those who think that this is an Islamic" issue think again. Paediphiles are mostly white westerners stalking & raping kids all over the world,so please refrain from making this a religious issue of Muslims vs others.We must condemn this to protect children all over the world not bcos they are of a particular race, religion,culteure etc Childern are children!

Lona Goudswaard (90)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 6:20 am
S&N Glad to see so many already signed.

Marija Mohoric (40)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 7:38 am
Thank you

Marija Mohoric (40)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 7:39 am

Franshisca Dearmas (89)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 9:24 am
Noted and signed. TY

Saturday August 17, 2013, 1:00 pm
Signed, thanks.

. (0)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 1:04 pm
Signed already.... The Nigerian parliament can't do anything good for their own country. Yet, they will stand behind the idiot, Yerima because he is one of their own. Please show the world that you are not as inept and selfish as the world believes.

Kathleen R. (138)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 1:07 pm
noted, had already signed

Anna Undebeck (256)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 1:10 pm
Thanks Beverly! Signed and shared, and noted.

Lynne Buckley (0)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 2:20 pm

. (0)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 4:06 pm
almost 100% of these girls were abused and mutilated through FGM and now they are losing even more human rights. feral dogs in the street are treated better.

Unnikrishnan Sasidharan (44)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 9:01 pm

Debra Tate (17)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 9:27 pm
Signed and Noted.

Yenuen Garcia (7)
Saturday August 17, 2013, 10:52 pm
Esperemos que esto se termine a esas niņas no solo les quitan su libertad el dolor que tienen que soportar al ser mutiladas. Firmado y compartido

Giana Peranio-Paz (404)
Sunday August 18, 2013, 1:06 am
Thank you for signing the petition " United Nations: Stop The Nigerian Senate From Making Under-Age Marriage The Law!" Thanks Beverly.

Past Member (0)
Sunday August 18, 2013, 5:22 am
with 126,676 supporters
23,324 NEEDED

Kenneth Davies (0)
Sunday August 18, 2013, 7:11 am
noted with interest

Al C. (7)
Sunday August 18, 2013, 9:21 am

Sergio Padilla (63)
Sunday August 18, 2013, 5:41 pm

Melania Padilla (197)
Monday August 19, 2013, 2:38 pm
Signed of course

Yvonne F. (181)
Friday August 23, 2013, 3:32 am
Horrible!!!!! So signed! Thanks Beverly
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