National Human Rights Commission, NHRC has stopped a scheduled marriage between a 40 year old man and a 13-year old girl who is still a primary school pupil at POWA primary school in Abuja.
Following a tip off, the Commission swung into action and retrieved the minor from the offender’s house and invited all parties involved to the Commission, including the groom to be, one Mr. Ibrahim, who had full knowledge that the girl was less than 18 years of age prescribed by law.
It was gathered that the marriage which was due to take place on 24th July, 2015 was instantly halted by the Commission after an immediate investigation and intervention.
After thorough interrogations, the Commission sited the relevant laws to back its decision to stop the marriage which include Sections 21, 22, 23 of the Child Rights Act 2003 which prohibits Child marriage or betrothal and also prescribes punishment for the offender with five years imprisonment or five hundred thousand naira (N500, 000) fine.
While referring the matter to the Commissioner of Police, FCT Command for prosecution, the Executive Secretary of the Commission, Prof. Ben Angwe expressed the determination of the Commission to ensure the implementation of the Child Rights Act and its enforcement against all persons irrespective of their status in the society or religious belief.
Prof. Angwe therefore charged all parents and guardians to be vigilant and ensure that their children and wards are not exposed to early marriage which according to him is not only against the law but has psychological, social and health implications to the girl child.

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