Saudi Arabia’s recent law illegalizing marriages under 18 years has generated so much reactions among Nigerians, while many applauded the decision, opinions from northern Nigeria disapproved of Saudi’s new law which they regarded as un-Islamic; someone even suggested that women must be married early to avoid promiscuity because no ( matured woman can exceed 18 years without having sex) ; for the same reason and fairness, I want the north to begin rigorous advocacy for teenager boys to be married to older women.
The fixation of northern Muslims with the sexuality of the girl child is suspicious, most of the recent rhetorics against the Saudi Arabia marriage law revealed an unspoken conviction among most northern Muslim men that women are nymphomaniacs with insatiable sexual desires, and this must be tamed the moment the girl-child reaches puberty. This had led to cases of child marriages in the region, mostly between teenage girls and older men. I observed too that this too exposed a much more troubling fact, the sanctification of pedophilia.
Is the boy-child less sexually active or charged than the girl, is teenage promiscuity evident among girls – northern girls – only and not among their boys? It is a biological fact that after reaching puberty, teenage boys and girls begin to discover their sexuality and become curious to know more about it, and to engage in intercourse. As to who, between the male and female teens, is most sexually active I cannot say, but it I will not be entire wrong to state that male teens unlike the females, often take the initiative to engage in sex. Biologically, the man most take the initiative, that is why human males are easily aroused by a female nudity, partial or full!
In northern Nigeria, teenage boys compete with older men for women in their peerage; because the society had not considered marrying teenage boys and girls among themselves; it forced celibacy on the boys and condemn the girls to early marriage. Although, there are instances whereby teenagers were married, when I was in secondary school a Muslim classmate of mine from the north who was about 15 or 16 years was “pampered” with a young bride – it is known as “Auren Gata” in Hausa. But in most cases, before the girls discover their sexuality, an older man is already lusting after her budding bosom and curvatures! And would use his wealth to exploit and compel the parents to marry the girl child to him, and used religion to blackmail the society to be tolerant.
This paedophilic obsession is not condemned but cloaked in religion to legitimize it. This was what made most non-Muslim and some Muslims to claim such practice are enshrined in Islam; some often cite the marriage of Prophet Mohammed(Pbuh) and his youngest wife Aisha, but this was a marriage carried out for political convenience and has nothing to do with the Prophets fixation with teenagers, in fact, his first wife was fifteen years older than him, and they remained in a monogamous marriage until her death. It was after she died that the Prophet as a widower and Caliph entered into polygamous marriage – including marrying the teenage Aisha, for political reasons to strengthen alliance with newer paramountcies absorbed by the young Islamic caliphate.
If the marriage of the Prophet to Aisha is what is emulated by northern Nigerian Muslims, why can’t his marriage to Khadija also emulated by marrying teenager boys to older women. Or is it they are also convinced that the teenager boys have no libidinal cravings, or that male sexual desires aren’t as wild or insatiable as the girls’. Could it also be that older northern women are not attracted to young boys! I think marrying teenage boys out to older women will be less harmful: no scare of VVF cases, no burden of nursing, or upkeep – because the older wife would probably be well off materially and financially to cater for the family. But the north will never consent to this or encouraged it, the prefer to cage the girl child with a pedophile in the institution of marriage.
Until the entire northern Muslim advocate vigorously for early marriage among boys under 18 years of age to older women; or parents fund marriage and upkeep of teenage couples until they are old enough to begin conceiving and earning a living; There is no justification whatsoever for marrying out girls who are under the age of 18. To insist on this practice is to silently encourage pedophilia which Islam forbids, and which the law of the land criminalized.