Faculty: Law
Department: Law


Uzor, F. E.
Arinze-Umobi, C


This dissertation attempts a critical analysis of the Nigerian Matrimonial Causes Act currently coded as Cap M7 LFN 2004 which originally took effect from 17th March 1970. The work has become imperative in view of the fact that since the inception of the Act in 1970, there has been no amendment whatsoever in spite of the glaring need for a review and reform of the Act. The study examines the criticisms that have been levelled against the Act right from its inception and identifies areas that need review and reform. The methodology adopted in this research includes references to different laws, conventions, case laws, internet resources, statutes and journal articles. The study inter-alia, finds that the Nigerian MCA was a product of a military government, in which due processes such as parliamentary debates, due publicity and consultation of relevant stakeholders were not done before its amendment. Furthermore, the research exposes other problematic matters arising from the Act such as jurisdictional flaws and suggest solutions to curb the observed problems. Contemporary and contentious issues like same- sex marriage vis-à-vis the MCA formed part of the dissertation. The work goes further to suggest reform which the Act needs in order to be more realistic and responsive to social changes in Nigeria and also reflect our sociological background as well as check the disturbing trend of matrimonial challenges in Nigeria. Reform suggested include legally-backed up mandatory seminar for prospective marriage couples, legally-backed up mandatory use of Sociologists and Psychologists in divorce petition proceedings as well as establishment of Specialized Family Courts.