Gender inequality of all forms may well be global challenge but Nigeria one is slightly different, in the sense that there is almost no ending to how women are made to bend over for just about anything.
The story goes that a lady had a child with her boyfriend while at university, she wrote an open letter to the father. According to her, their relationship ended after the birth of the child. Child now seven years old and at school. The father had only paid for one term of school fees and he doesn’t see his child, he has moved on to re-marry.
It was a bit emotional plea, ex almost begging the man to do the needful.
After reading that blogpost, I can see why a nation like Nigeria fails on all levels. There are so many laws in the land but the enforcement of them is another case entirely.
In the case of a relationship break up, if the child is old enough and the father is keen, he could take the child with him. But for those who wanted to move on with new partner, they don’t look back unless they are sensible – all that we rely on is peer pressure to get people to think straight but this strategy seldom work for everyone.
There is a saying that Iyawo ta n fe l’omo e n wu ni (children are loved if the father still in love with the mother). Lazy thinking fathers use this saying to their advantage, hence many walk away from the relationship with no thoughts to the welfare of the child.
An uncle of mine is like one of these fathers. At one point his wife left him due to health reasons, she left their 10 and 8 year old sons with the father. She would have gone with the boys but my uncle insisted he was going to look after them given the woman wasn’t mentally stable to care for them.
Few months down the line uncle decided to travel out of town looking for job. He left the two boys with my father to look after – let’s just say to my mother to look after.
He was only about a year away from home but ended up fathering another son by another woman. As it is his manner, he returned home without the new woman, but told his brother (my father) to expect addition to the family soon.
After settling back in the village, the first wife got better, they successfully settle their misunderstanding and family was back together, the boys with my family went to their parents – everyone was happy.
One day after church service, we came home to see the little boy and his maternal grandmother waiting for my father in the verandah – she was a pleasant woman. She chose to see my father rather than the father of her grandson. Her daughter, my uncle’s girl friend had reunited with her husband too, hence the grandmother’s visit.
Yea, both woman and man’s friend are match from heaven.
Surprisingly, my father was getting a bit tired too, he definitely could not afford to keep the new boy in school at that point in his life.
The boy’s grandmother was a very smart woman, she was happy to leave the boy with my father just as the tradition states, however, if he is going to end up with a father who cannot be bothered to look back and check on the product of his seeds for five years, she’d rather take the boy back with her to town.
In the end, the grandmother left with the boy. As for the uncle, I doubt he has seeing the boy since that day.
My cousin is a grown man now in his early thirties, heaven knows what he thinks of his father, probably don’t even think of him at all. And why should he?
But I wonder, for how long do we make women the sole provider for children especially in a country where welfare support is non existence? This goes of the post I read.