I have a secret, I don’t like attending weddings, I don’t know why, I prefer seeing a movie or going to the beach to attending weddings. But there comes a time in every girl’s life where she has to attend weddings and the likes, I guess that time came in my life in the month of June. This is due to the fact that I had the opportunity to attend four weddings in a roll and in one month. So, it is official that I attended four weddings in four weeks, thus the month of June must be truly special.
People that dislike attending weddings like myself believe weddings are tiring, hectic and stressful. I totally agree but my attendance at the four weddings/traditional marriages gave me the time to ponder over weddings in Nigeria. In Nigeria, like in every other African country we have our culture and tradition and this can be easily seen in our way of life. Marriage is not left out when it comes to tradition, infact there are countless ways of getting married to a Nigerian girl depending on her ethnic group, but beyond this is the culture we inherited from our colonial masters called church wedding and/or marriage under the Act.
This form of marriage never existed during the era of our ancestors who were free men and lived their lives in accordance with their traditions. Presently, in the 21st century it becomes pertinent to ask: which type of marriage is the preferred mode of getting married in this generation? I know as a fact that some people prefer to get married in accordance with the culture of their people, in accordance with the English law and in the presence of God as well.
While every young couple desires to get married in the traditional way as well as get married in accordance with their religion, not everybody can afford it. As we all know getting married to a woman in Nigeria entails expenses and the expenses incurred by the man becomes even more if she is from the eastern states. Certain eastern states are famous for exuberant bride prices; sometimes the bride price involves buying food items and drinks for all the members of the girl’s village. Imagine being faced with this enormous task as a guy to buy food stuffs and drinks for virtually all groups ranging from the umunna*, umunne*, umuada* and the youths of the village as well as the parents of your bride. It gives the impression that you are getting married to the village. Anyways, that’s the beauty of Nigeria which is rich in culture and tradition. Now, after paying the bride price and performing the traditional ceremony, in the eyes of the girl’s family, you have married their daughter and she is free to live with you. The girl’s family cherishes the traditional marriage because it signifies that the girl has been rightly given out by her family to the man’s family. The girl on her part depending on her religion cherishes the church wedding where she is at liberty to show off her wedding dress and shoes and all other accessories.