"I never promised you marriage" was what he kept repeating, nay, barking. Of all the things that were said in that tumultuous period, that's the statement I can't quite seem to forget. It baffled me. On the one hand; I never asked for marriage. On the other, that was besides the point. The point was that he promised commitment, honesty, loyalty, transparency and accountability. So naturally you can imagine my grievance (putting it mildly) when I received evidence that not only was he engaged to be married, the chica was heavily preggers.
And when I expressed this grievance the response I got was "I never promised you marriage!"
He said this as though if he had promised, then I had a right to hold him to it, and I could seek retribution before God or the law. Yes, if that was the case he was right. And maybe that's why that Judge just ordered a young man to be remanded in prison for jilting his bae.
Ok, tbh that law doesn't apply here, this is obviously a criminal matter. What my ex unwittingly made reference to would be a civil suit. In law it's called breach of promise to marry.
See, even the law understands that it's an actionable offense to promise marriage and break it.
A promise to marry someone doesn't necessarily give rise to a contract. But just like contract, breach of promise to marry can give rise to a cause of action! This is built on the premise that where there is a wrong, there is a remedy, it's trite law.
S.197 of the Evidence Act says No plaintiff in any action for breach of promise of marriage can recover a verdict, unless his or her testimony is corroborated by some other material evidence in support of such promise; and the fact that the defendant did not answer letters affirming that he had promised to marry the plaintiff is not such corroboration.
Ok, lemme cut out the legal jargons. The Evidence Act recognizes that breach of promise to marry is an actionable offense and can potentially entitle the plaintiff (the aggrieved/the dumped/the jilted/the heartbroken) to damages (compensation; often a sum of money or as the court pleases). Sha provided that you have evidence that he promised to marry you, to corroborate your claim. The Act doesn't state what amounts to evidence but thankfully case law does. Hehe. So your conduct alone can actually imply that you're promising someone marriage. Also referring to the person as your fiancé, "Iyawo mi", "my wife" also implies promise to marry. All you Naija boys are you hearing???
Well, doesn't that then mean that I can take my ex to court? Wait what? Yippee, im'ma be smiling to the bank in a few. I'm gna buy a Lamborghini before Christmas! Yayyyyyyy!!! #LOL #SMH #RME
But really, ladies (assuming the nigerian judicial system wasn't so frigging frustrating) would you take a man to court for promising to marry you and then dumping you? Or would you rather leave it in the "divine court" since God has said vengeance is His, trusting Him to avenge you? Let's talk.
Men, be honest with me, if ladies actually did sue, how many ladies would have taken you to court for breach of promise to marry? (Remember you don't have to have actually proposed, your words and conducts could imply that promise)