By Oluwatoyin Adeleye
Toke Makinwa’s 3-year marriage to Maje Ayida has finally been dissolved at an Igbosere High Court.
Toke had filed for divorce on March 9, 2016 on the grounds that Maje committed adultery.
The OAP and author has details about her failed marriage in her book On Becoming.
Justice Morenike Obadina, while delivering judgment held that Ayida filed an answer to the petition but did not give oral evidence in support of it.
She said the position of the law was settled as pleadings did not amount to evidence.
“Pleadings on which no evidence was led are deemed abandoned. Therefore, Ayida’s evidence is deemed abandoned. The effect being that the petitioner’s evidence is unchallenged and uncontroverted,’’ she ruled.
The judge said the issue of cruelty which the petitioner (Toke) relied on was established because of the “mental and emotional stress” she was subjected to by her husband.
“I hold that the marriage has broken down on grounds of intolerable behaviour.
I hereby pronounce a ‘Decree Nisi’ dissolving the marriage between Makinwa and Ayida which was administered at the Federal Marriage Registry, Ikoyi, Lagos, on January 15, 2014.
The order Nisi shall become absolute three months from today unless within that period sufficient cause is shown why it should not be made absolute,” Obadina said.
Makinwa had told the court that her husband committed adultery with Anita Solomon, adding that the relationship produced a child.
She said since their marriage was contracted, Maje had “behaved in a way she could not reasonably be expected to continue to bear”.
She also said Maje was cruel towards her, adding that their differences became irreconcilable.
During the trial, Toke testified in court and tendered some documents including their marriage certificate which were admitted in evidence.
In her testimony, she said that after their marriage was contracted in 2014, cohabitation with Maje ceased on November 8, 2015, without any child.
She also told the court of an instance where Maje threatened separation and even drafted a separation agreement because she discovered that he bought a ticket for Anita to travel to London.
Maje, who replied to the petition when served, however, instructed his counsel, T. O. Lawal, not to continue with the defence.
Anita, who is the second respondent, refused to join issues with Toke.