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Why marriage mates kill their spouses: lawyers

She also listed a history of stalking, infidelity, lack of trust, and insecurity as other factors of spousal killings

• April 14, 2021

Two lawyers, Toyin Ojo and Bola Ajayi, have linked the recent increase in spousal killings in Nigeria to domestic violence.

The lawyers, who spoke with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN), in separate interviews, said domestic violence was the major factor responsible for spousal killings, adding that women were mostly the victims.

Ms Ojo noted that most women killed by their husbands had been physically abused before the homicide.

“There have been cases of domestic violence between the spouses prior to the death. Most women that kill their husbands reacted to the accumulated abuse that the husbands have subjected them to,” she explained.

She urged parents and religious leaders to stop advising couples to remain in abusive marriages.

“Some spouses are advised to continue to endure the abuse and be prayerful for God’s intervention. Women should have been encouraged to leave abusive marriages in order to avert incidences of killings,” Ms Ojo added.

According to her, most of the killings were accidental. She explained that the perpetrators only wanted to use a weapon to defend themselves.

In a similar vein, Ms Ajayi noted that some men believed they must be violent to be respected by their wives, not seen as being weak.

She stated further that childhood experience of violence and abuse was also responsible for the homicide.

“Men who were abused in their childhood or observed their fathers abusing their mothers are at greater risk for abusing their wives,” said Ms Ajayi.

She advised that intending couples’ psychological assessments be conducted before marriage to curb the menace.

Ms Ajayi urged the police to always attend to spousal abuse victims and not dismiss it as a family matter.

She also listed a history of stalking, infidelity, lack of trust, and insecurity as other factors of spousal killings.


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