Monday, July 22, 2013

Child marriage: I voted in error - Akinyelure

Senator Ayo Akinyelure of Ondo Central on Monday said he voted for child marriage in error during last week’s contentious debate on Section 29 (4) (b) of the 1999 Constitution.
The senator, who broke down in tears while briefing members of his constituency on the issue, said he was “very sorry for this costly mistake.”
The provisions of the amendment to the section suggest that an underage married girl can be described as an adult.
The senator stated that he pressed the ‘No’ button during the electronic voting session under the impression that he was voting against early marriage.
“I am very sorry for this costly mistake. I actually voted in error. I pressed the "No" button during the electronic voting session thinking that I was kicking against the early marriage. I can never support such barbaric and wicked bill.
“I am educated and I am representing a people who value education. They are not only literate but highly exposed. I cannever support a bill which is not only retrogressive in nature but will also subject the girl child to pain and anguish,” he said.
Protesters from various walks of life had trooped to the venue of the meeting at Adegbemile Hall in Akure with placards and asked the senator to explain why he voted in support of the amendment.
The issue has raised much dust across the country, with Nigerians condemning the proposed amendment.
Akinyelure and a senator from Edo State, Odion Ugbesia, were the only Southerners who voted in support of the amendment.
Ugbesia is yet to speak up on why he gave his support for the controversial amendment.
------DAILY TIMES NIGERIA, July 22, 2013
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