The Federal Government via the Ministry of Interior on Tuesday reiterated that marriages formalised at the Ikoyi registry in Lagos are constitutional and legal.
Several reports had claimed marriages conducted at federal registries were illegal as local governments are responsible for that aspect of public life.
However, in a statement by spokesperson Blessing Lere-Adams, the Ministry of Interior said such claims were misleading and false.
“The Federal Government wishes to assure the general public-especially prospective couples wishing and planning to contract their marriages at the Ikoyi Marriage Registry or any other Federal Marriage Registry under the Ministry of Interior, that they are free to do so, as the 1999 Constitution legally empowers the Federal Government to contract such marriages,” the statement said.
“The Permanent Secretary and Principal Registrar of Marriages, Dr. Shuaib Belgore confirmed this statement while fielding questions in his office . Belgore emphatically submitted that the misinformation and totally incorrect news making the rounds recently in the Social media-was incorrect and should be disregarded. He further stated that there should be no cause for apprehension to all intending couples who have planned to be married during this festive period-and at any other time at the Ikoyi Marriage Registry in Lagos or at any other Federal Marriage Registry.
“He stressed that the Federal High Court in three previous decisions had affirmed the powers of the Ministry to conduct statutory marriages, based on the provision of the Constitution, marriage acts and Legal Notices issued by the President and Minister of Interior. He stated that these judgements are valid, subsisting and binding, until set aside by a superior court, which is not the case.
“Dr. Shuaib Belgore therefore wishes to again reassure the general public, especially intending couples that the contraction of all Marriages at the Ikoyi Marriage Registry is constitutional and Valid.
“The Permanent Secretary wishes all prospective couples planning their marriages during this yuletide a pleasant ceremony.”