I see polygamy as a form of corruption, polygamy brings nothing than poverty, breeding of lots of illegitimate poor children, child improper care, lack of adequate education and so on....Under civil lawNigeria does not recognize polygamous unionsHowever, 12 out of the 36 Nigerian states recognize polygamous marriages as being equivalent to monogamous marriages. All twelve states are governed by Sharia Law. The states, which are all northern, include the states of BauchiBornoGombeJigawaKadunaKanoKatsinaKebbiNigerSokotoYobe, and Zamfara which allows for a man to take more than one wife.

Zamfara State was the first to legislate polygamy, which occurred on January 7, 2000. Gombe State has been the most recent state to provide for civil polygamy, legalizing it on December 14, 2001. As the southern region of Nigeria is composed of mostly Christians, polygamous marriages have not been legally introduced at this time. Attempts to introduce Sharia (thereby legalizing polygamy) have been made in Oyo StateKwara StateLagos State and several others, yet all unsuccessful. Polygamous unions are recognized by customary law in Nigeria, providing a handful of benefits for those in polygamous unions ranging from inheritance rights to child custody.As of 2009, there has yet to be any debate of introducing a measure that would allow for civil polygamous marriages to be recognized within the entire country of Nigeria, letting the legislation play out on a state-by-state basis rather than introducing a nationwide measure.

There are no requirements based on religion in the North, therefore Christians are legally allowed to form polygamous unions just as Muslims may do. Christian church leaders such as Archbishop Peter Akinola of the Anglican Church of Nigeria have condemned the practice of polygamy by Christians, with Akinola going on to write "The observation [of polygamy] will destroy our witness if not firmly addressed. We cannot claim to be a Bible-believing church and yet be selective in our obedience. Reports of Nigerian Mormons practicing polygamy have also surfaced.

Despite the four-wife limitation, there have been numerous indications that many Nigerians bypass this law, such as with Muhammadu Bello Masaba, an 84-year-old Islamic cleric who was accused of illegal marriage due to his exceeding number of spouses, in which he had 86 wives. The charges were later withdrawn by the Niger State Sharia commission, with Masaba able to retain all of his spouses.

On an opposite note, it was reported in April 2007 that a Nigerian lesbian, Aunty Maiduguri, married four women in an elaborate ceremony in Kano State, though her union is not recognized by the government, and Maiduguri and her partners were forced to go into hiding shortly after the ceremony to avoid the possible threat of being stoned if convicted for lesbianism, which results in capital punishment for married Muslim women or caning for single Muslim women in Nigerian areas under Sharia Law.

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