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Rights Of Children Born Out Of Wedlock

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Section 42 (2) of the Constitution of the
Federal Republic of Nigeria, 1999 (as amended) provides thus, No citizen of Nigeria shall be subjected to any disability or deprivation merely by reason of the circumstances of his birth. This provision of the constitution provides for equal right for children born in a lawful wedlock and those born out of wedlock. The Supreme Court in the case of Salubi V. Nwariaku (2003) NWLR (Pt 819) endorsed this provision of the constitution, which it held that children of the deceased who were born within a lawful wedlock and the children born out of wedlock are entitled to equal shares to the properties of the deceased.
A child born out of wedlock has a right to apply for letter of administration, Section 26 (1) of the Administration of Estate law, laws of Lagos State, Volume 1, Cap A3, 2003 provides that “In granting administration the court shall have regard to the rights of all persons interested in the estate of the deceased person or the proceeds of sale thereof ….. and any such administration may be limited in any way the court thinks fit”. Note that the children born out of wedlock fall within the category of persons interested. And based on the above provision of the Constitution, he cannot be denied his right based on the circumstances of his birth, i.e, his right of applying for letter of administration. In Chief J.L.E Duke V. Rev (Dr) Peter Etim Duke (2014) LPELR -23095 (CA), the Court of Appeal upheld the judgment of the trial court where it granted letters of administration in respect to the deceased to both the apellant and respondent. Although the appellant, who was born within the lawful wedlock of the deceased, had contended that the respondent was not entitled to a grant of the letter of administration because he was born out of an adulterous relationship. The court held that, that was not enough ground to refuse the respondent his right to be appointed as an administrator to his late father’s estate.
Also in Mgbodu V. Mgbodu (2015) 12 NWLR (pt 1474) 415, the Court of Appeal held that a child born out of wedlock must not be prevented from partaking in the sharing of his deceased father’s estate. In the words of His Lordship, Bolaji-Yusuff, JCA, “it has long been established that in this land, Nigeria, once a father acknowledges the paternity, of a child whether born in or out of wedlock, the child is regarded as a legitimate child and is entitled to share in the estate of his/her father… This custom has now received Constitutional approval through Section 42 of the 999 Constitution (as amended) …..
It is also important to note that letters of administration can be set aside for the non inclusion of children born out of wedlock, as was the case in Mgbodu V Mgbodu (supra). It is advisable for the adoption of consensual approach in the administration of the estate and distribution of the assets of the deceased since both parties have equal right in the face of the law.

 

Nkechi Bright Ewere

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Law/Judiciary

Monarch Lauds Wike Over Anti-Cultism Unit

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The Eze Ali Omokpirikwu, Eze Okechuwku Okah, has commended the Rivers State Governor, Chief Nyesom Wike for the siting of the antti-cultism unit in Elele.
Eze Okah, who said this during a courtesy call on him by a non governmental organization: Elele Voice in his palace also commended the Governor for upgrading the Elele traditional stool to first class.
He said that the sitting of the anticultism unit in the community has made the area to be more secured for business activities.
According to him, the administration of Governor Wike is unprecedented especially in the areas of security, infrastructure and sanitation.
The traditional ruler who particularly commended the Governor for the unveiling of the Operation Sting security outfit, stressed that by the unveiling, the Governor has shown that Rivers State has no place for criminals adding that the Governor needs more supports to deliver the dividends of democracy to the people.
Eze Okah also told them that his decision to donate transformers to the community was to ensure constant power supply as over 20 communties in Elele have not had power supply in the last five years.
Earlier, the leader of the group, Mr Smart Johnson said that the group was in his palace to thank him for the donation of transformers to Elele community.
Johnson said that the kind gesture has restored the economy of the area, adding that the group would not relent in mobilizing support for the traditional ruler.
Meanwhile, the Deputy leader of Ikwerre Legislative Assembly, Hon. Amadi Jacob has called on the police authorities to investigate the alleged extortion activities of men of Operation Sting along the Elele-Owerri road.
Speaking in an interview with newsmen, he said that the activities of the police officers have brought shame to the people and advised the outfit to resist the temptation of being compromised in the performance of their duties.

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We’re Making Progress Against Banditry -CAS

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The Chief of Air Staff (CAS), Air Marshal Saddique Abrubaka, says the military has substantially contained emerging banditry in some  parts  of the country in addition to the successes recorded in the fight against insurgency in the North East.

Abubakar said this on Tuesday in an interview with newsmen in Yola.
Abubakar was in Yola to celebrate the Eid-el-Kabir with officers and men of the Air Task Force, engaged in the fight against insurgency in the north east.
He said the Nigerian Air Force (NAF) would continue to motivate its personnel to boost their morale in the task of keeping Nigeria and the society safe.
“We are making progress and all hands most be on deck to address the challenges, particularly the new challenge of banditry,” he said.
According to him, the NAF has established the quick Response Units in some states to bring security closer to the people.
The CAS lauded Nigerians for their understanding and urged the public to do more in terms of volunteering timely relevant information to security agencies.
He noted that the provision of adequate and effective security information to relevant authorities was the obligation of all Nigerians.
“I want to emphasize that security is not just about security agencies; everybody has a role to play to ensure Nigeria is secured,” Abubakar said.
While reiterating the commitment of NAF to ensuring the sovereignty and territorial integrity of Nigeria, the CAS lauded the Federal Government for doing a lot in equipping NAF in terms of aircraft and training to discharge its responsibility.
He lauded the performances of officers and men of the air task force, pointing out that his decision of always marking festive periods with them at the frontline was among others, to appreciate them and boost their morale to do more in discharging their assigned tasks.

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Bus Driver Commits Suicide At Mechanic Workshop In Lagos

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The Lagos State Police Command says a 43-year-old commercial bus driver has been found dead at a mechanic workshop after allegedly taking a liquid substance suspected to be sniper.
The spokesman for the command, DSP Bala Elkana, confirmed the incident in a statement on Monday.
Elkana said the Shomolu Pedro Police Station received an information that one Kabiru Bello of No. 77, Owode Ibeshe, Ikorodu, Lagos State, allegedly drank a liquid substance suspected to be sniper.
He said that the incident happened on Saturday at about 12.56p.m inside his Volkswagen commercial bus with registration number AKD-724 XM while at a mechanic workshop at Ladylack Bus stop, Shomolu.
“He was rushed to Adesola clinic, Shomolu, where he was confirmed dead. Homicide detectives visited the scene. One empty bottle of chemical substances suspected to be sniper was recovered.
“The corpse has been deposited in mortuary for autopsy,” he said.
Similarly, the police at Ilemba Hausa area of Lagos have recovered two locally made single barrel guns with 12 cartridges, one laptop and one mobile phone inside a vehicle abandoned by suspected robbers.
The police spokesman said the recovery was made on Saturday at about 9.30 p.m. after the Ilemba Hausa Police Station received a distress call that one Wale Lawal was dispossessed of his laptop by some armed robbers.
Elkana said the policemen deployed to the scene gave the hoodlums “a hot chase where the suspected robbers abandoned their black Honda vehicle with registration number KJA-705 BU containing the recovered items.
“The vehicle was moved to the station for further investigation.” he said.

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