AKINWUMI Akintayo, the Registrar of Marriage, Abuja Municipal Area Council (AMAC) has urged the Federal Government to make marriage certificates issued in the various marriage registries across the nation uniform.
Akintayo made the call in an interview with the News Agency of Nigeria (NAN) in Abuja on Monday.
He said that if the issue uniform marriage certificates was not addressed, it could lead to a serious problem in the near future.
According to him, the Federal Ministry of Interior should see the coordinating of the activities of the local governments and area councils as their primary function instead of fighting over conducting marriages.
He said that the ministry should stop confusing the public by declaring marriage certificates issued by local governments as illegal.
He recalled that in 2014, a Lagos High Court judgement stopped some local governments from conducting marriages because they customised their certificates different from the one in the constitution, thereby declaring them as illegal.
“We appeal to the Federal Government to do the needful by following what the constitution says.
“We do not need to fight one another as the two are agents of government, so there should not be rancour as to who conducts marriage.
“This is because when people go to the embassies they say some certificates are not acceptable; some say they do not want local government certificates,’’ he said.
According to him, AMAC’s certificates have never been rejected because the council is using the unified certificate by the Federal Marriage Registry.
Akintoye said that the ministry of interior should rather direct their grievances to Non-Governmental Organisations conducting marriages and issuing certificates.
He accused the Intergovernmental Marriage Committee, headed by one Mr Rogers, for conducting marriages in Port Harcourt, Kogi and some parts of Oyo and Lagos.
He, however, noted that the court had in 2014 stopped the ministry staff members from parading themselves from conducting marriages, but that they had refused to obey the court order.
“When you look at their signboard, you will see Federal Marriage Registry and when you look at the Marriage Act, there is nothing like the Federal Marriage Registry; it is marriage district which refers to the local government and area council.
“When you say Federal Marriage Registry, does it now mean that if I want to get married in my village, I should go to the Federal Capital or state capital before I can get married?’’ he wondered.
Akintoye, therefore, advised citizens to read the constitution and not allow themselves to be misled. (NAN)
– Feb. 11, 2019 @ 17:35 GMT |