3 lawsuits later, mum gets her son

Dubai - The quarrel started in 2015 when the Nigerian husband filed a lawsuit against his wife and asked for divorce


Sherouk Zakaria

Published: Wed 12 Jul 2017, 11:20 PM

Last updated: Thu 13 Jul 2017, 9:31 AM

A woman has won the custody of her child in a third attempt of a long legal battle with her husband who accused her of polygamy.
The quarrel started in 2015 when the Nigerian husband filed a lawsuit against his wife and asked for divorce as he allegedly discovered she was still married to her first husband. He requested for their son's custody, alleging that his wife was incapable of raising their son. After the Personal Status Court and Court of Appeal ruled against the wife, she won her case with the Court of Cassation.
The husband had claimed that after he converted to Islam upon moving to Dubai, the couple experienced a lot of problems. It forced the wife to leave the house and take the child with her. The child is now eight years old. He said that while she was away, he stumbled upon documents that showed she was still married to her first husband.
However, the wife denied his claims and presented the court with a divorce certificate dated back to 2012. She had also said that she was the one who was kicked out of the house and has been supporting herself and the boy on her own for three years. She also submitted a document that proved that she had converted to Islam herself.
In 2016, the Personal Status Court convicted the woman of polygamy as the divorce certificate was dated to 2012 while her second marriage with the plaintiff took place in 2004 in their hometown in Nigeria.
The court also rejected the husband's divorce request considering that both were not married in the first place due to the illegality of polygamy, and refused to give the mother the custody of her child.
The pair appealed the verdict, but the court referred the woman to prosecution and charged with having sex outside wedlock.
However, lawyer Awatif Mohammed of Al Rowad Advocates and Legal Consultants took the case to the Cassation Court. After proving that the woman was divorced before her second marriage, she was able to win the case.
"We were able to bring documents that proved that the divorce took place in a legal manner before her second marriage," said Mohammed. She noted that she was able to retain the document from the court where the woman was divorced. "We were also able to present documents that proved that she has been in charge of their son's expenses for over three years after her husband kicked her out of the house." The court, therefore, ordered the divorce and granted the woman custody of her child.
The court also ordered the man to pay a monthly alimony of Dh7,500 and Dh60,000 a year as housing expenses and Dh15,000 for furniture. The plaintiff was also ordered to pay for the son's educational fees and the legal fees of the lawsuit. The verdict is final and not subject to appeal.

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