The Contributions of Independent Shari'ah Panel (ISP) in Curbing Incidences of Divorce (Talâq) Practices among Muslims in Ibadan, Southwestern Nigeria

  • Habibat Oladosu-Uthman
Keywords: Ibadan. Independent Shari?ah Panel, Muslims, law, divorce

Abstract

The family institution, which has served as the foundation for civilizations and progress, has witnessed great challenges as evidenced in the increased  divorce rates among young couples and the general antipathy for marriage as a whole. This is also true among Muslims of Ibadan, Oyo State in southwestern Nigeria. To stem the tide of this development, Independent Shari’ah Panels (ISP) were established in Lagos, Ogun, Oyo and Osun states by Muslim communities in the region to provide an alternative legal platform for Muslims for adjudication of cases relating to divorce and other issues of concern. This paper, therefore, examines the contributions of ISP in curbing incidences of divorce among Muslims in southwestern Nigeria, using Ibadan as a case study. It investigates the strategies adopted by ISP in Ibadan and to what extent it has assisted in curbing incidences of divorce among Muslims in Ibadan. The paper adopted the traditionists' and revisionists' approaches on talaq as espoused by Yusuf Qaradâwi, Sayyid Qutb and Muhammad Al-Tahir Ibn Ashur. Data were sourced through participant observation and structured interviews from litigants and officials in divorce cases at the Ibadan branch of ISP, which was also purposively sampled because it has not been critically engaged by scholars. The study concludes that regardless of ISP's laudable efforts through shari'ah applications, the practice of divorce and other sacred institutions that have been badly managed by Muslims may not improve until the ideals of Islam are given prominent space in the lives of the Muslims.

Keywords: Ibadan. Independent Shari?ah Panel, Muslims, law, divorce

Published
2021-06-21
Section
Articles

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print ISSN: 2141-9744