-Estranged wife speaks
‘My husband’s family are only interested in his property’
Akere family lawyer responds:
‘Nobody is denying her the children
38 year-old Isaac Akere and fiancée, Foluke had dreamt of beginning life together as husband and wife on Saturday, April 12, 2014, but their dreams crashed a week before the wedding inside the Majidun River near Ikorodu, Lagos. The two were among the nine people that died in the tragic boat mishap on Wednesday, April 2, 2014.
Isaac Akere, who worked with CMA CGM Delma Nigeria Limited, a shipping company based in Apapa, Lagos, was on his way home from work alongside his fiancée, Foluke. They boarded a commercial boat belonging to Bell Marine Services from Ebute Ero, Lagos Island to Ikorodu and the boat capsized midway into their journey and emptied its passengers into the river. The accident was said to have occurred due to overloading and speeding. Out of the 21 passengers on board, 13 people were rescued while nine died. The body of Isaac Akere was not found until Saturday, April 5, 2014, around Oworonsoki, Lagos. Bodies of all the deceased were deposited at the General Hospital, Ikorodu, Lagos.
Shortly after news went to town about the incident and that two of the victims were about to wed, 36 year-old Feyisayo surfaced to claim the late Isaac Akere was her legal husband. She came out with pictures and marriage certificate. But in a swift reaction, the Akere family countered her claim, insisting that the late Isaac had divorced Feyisayo since 2011. The two parties have been exchanging hot words since then with Feyisayo raising the alarm about the whereabouts of her children. She begged to be reunited with the children she had for the late Isaac – Ibukun, 9 and Ifeoluwa, 7. The two children are presently in the custody of the Akere family.
The wedding that never held, according to ENCOMIUM Weekly findings, was supposed to take place on Saturday, April 12, 2014, at late Foluke’s parents home in Egbe, Yagba West Local Government Area, Kogi State. Isaac Akere and his family had planned to pay Foluke’s bride price that day and settle every other thing needed for the marriage ceremony. We were even told plans were in top gear to storm Egbe in Kogi State that Saturday with some siblings of late Isaac Akere planning to join the wedding train from their base in Ilorin, Kwara State. Unfortunately, all that plan disappeared into thin air as the principal actors in the about to be held marriage ceremony had died.
According to our findings, Foluke’s family are claiming that their late daughter should not be addressed as Mrs. Akere because her bride price had not been paid and as such her corpse in the mortuary was labeled as Foluke Yeye.
Meanwhile, the body of Isaac will be buried on Tuesday, April 15, 2014 at a riverside in Igbogbo along Ofin in Ikorodu, Lagos.
‘They are just interested in his property’ – FEYISAYO AKERE
On Sunday, April 13, 2014, we had a chat with late Isaac Akere’s estranged wife, Feyisayo. Our encounter with her goes thus…
What really is the genesis of the problem?
Let me first say this, I and my husband are still legally married. The problem I am having with his family since he died was because they wanted to sell my husband’s property. I went to the house and pasted ‘This house is not for sale’ on it. The family came when I had left to remove it. What do they want to do with that property? I learnt they brought some people to inspect the house and since I have raised the alarm they have been fighting with me. They took my children away. They claimed my late husband had dissolved our marriage. How can my husband institute a divorce and I am not aware of it. Before he died, he wanted to come back to me. I knew he would come back to me one day. We had been talking on phone. All those family members fighting me don’t know all that went wrong in the first place. They are just interested in his property.
But it was said that you moved out of your matrimonial home and left the children?
It’s a lie, I did not move out of my matrimonial home. Foluke was the one who caused the problem between me and my husband. My husband’s mother wanted him to marry somebody from the village. They said I am too wise, that I am a Lagosian. My husband even told me about it and he assured me that he would not heed their advice to marry from the village.
Later, I started seeing Foluke in our house. She was a nurse. My daughter told me she saw her and my husband on our bed. I didn’t believe because this was a person I cooked for whenever she came visiting. I never knew they were dating until she got pregnant. My husband now rented a three bedroom flat for her in Ikorodu, Lagos. He later moved in with her and left me and my children. When I confronted him over the issue, he begged me. I knew it was not ordinary. All I am asking for now is for the family to release my children so that I can take good care of them. They should allow me see my children.
So, what is your plan now?
I want the government to intervene. I want my children back. I didn’t enjoy my husband before he died and now they wouldn’t allow me to enjoy my children. They took them away since April 4, 2014 and I have not set my eyes on them.
For how long have you been married to your husband?
We started living together since 2003. We did our introduction in 2004 and formalized our wedding on May 20, 2006.
It appears you still have feelings for the late Isaac?
Yes, of course. Since the day he was reported dead I have not slept. I and my family have been going about how to look for his missing body. Presently, the family is not talking about burial, probably they don’t want me to be there.
‘Nobody is denying her the children’ -AKERE family lawyer
ALSO on Sunday, April 13, 2014, we reached out to Akere family lawyer, Bamidele Olayemi on the issue and this is what he told us.
“Nobody is denying the fact that she has children for the late Isaac Akere. The problem is why did she leave those children when they were so young. She left the home and never came back until she learnt Isaac had died. She went to the jetty to claim she was legally married to Isaac. The family had taken custody of the children. They are safe. The divorce granted Isaac the custody of the children. Nobody said she can’t see them but the way she is going about it is not proper. She went to Isaac’s house and told the tenants not to pay rent to anybody. The divorce she is claiming she did not know anything about was granted in 2011 and Isaac decided to remarry in 2014.”
– FOLUSO SAMUEL