Marriage is the legally or formally recognised union of a man and a woman or a legally accepted relationship between two people in which they live together, or the official ceremony that results in this. Though there are different types of marriage but the one of utmost importance in this article is the one called marriage of convenience (marriage between the wealthy or elites).
Marriage of convenience is that in which the partners have married, not because they love each other, but in order to get an advantage, such as the right to live in the each other’s luxury or have access to the others’ wealth and properties.
It has become a norm in the Nigerian society for rich families to exchange their children in marital vows, though a few of them differ. Anytime there is a society wedding, its one rich man’s son marrying another rich man’s daughter and one wonder why it is so. For instance, you would never hear that an Adenuga or the Odogwus’ or even the Ubahs’ getting married to an Njoku or an Ikeji or Nwosu? Hahahaha!!!
But on a serious note, why is it like this at least in this part of the country? Research and inquiries, have it that some if not all of such marriages are fixed to align both families’ commercial interests. Others marry to be dependent on their parents’ wealth that is, marrying for money and denying them of the happiness of marriage.
Sometimes one keeps asking if these couples truly love each other. Some of them, as observed, face marital problems because they didn’t marry because they had mutual love feelings but to maintain wealth standards.
People now have a myopic view about marriage, vision and money. Those from the poor background are looking for rich folks to marry and take care of their family needs while the rich folks are looking for their fellow rich folks to marry to avoid being the dependable or having to cater for their partner’s family but instead to solidify their wealth by marrying people of their class.
The question now is, what happens to the dream of a poor girl believing that one day her prince charming would come and take her away. This is really a serious issue because it is contributing to the imbalance in our economy; How, you may ask, by making the economy flow in a particular direction instead of circulating, thereby making the rich get richer and the poor, poorer.
According to Millicent George, she believes that the reason why they marry themselves is for financial security and stability. “They marry themselves to ensure that the source of their income and wealth never fizzles out but instead retained”.
Ifeanyi Collins who concurred with Millicent said the marriage between the rich is as a result of them running away from liability factor. He believes that having to marry someone of lower status than them, would make the poor become liabilities to the rich folks and they often need people that can fend for themselves not people who would depend on their income for sustainability.
Noting another factor, Njoku Jacy Xavier stated that the reason why the rich marry themselves is for social factor purpose. According to her, the rich believes that if you don’t have a known surname, they can’t associate with you in public for fear of being mocked by their friends and relatives. “Rich parents would be like, I want my daughter to marry the son of this great business tycoon because he is of same class with them or because marrying them would boost their financial status or probably because he is a family friend so that they can maintain that social status quo and avoid being mocked by people for having poor people as in-laws”.
For Ekwu Nwadiuto, she noted that the primary aim of such marriages is to have financial stability, as the so called rich families do not want to start spending much money on the in-laws who are poor or you would hear them say things like, “they don’t want to suffer or end up being like the poor but instead they want someone that can keep up with the same lifestyle their daughters or sons already have, most especially the daughters. Meeting points is also another factor or a plus. Most times it’s like two different worlds for the rich and the poor. She went further to point out 70percent of such marriages is of convenience or as it is called “arrange marriage”. “I want my son to marry the daughter of this my business partner or associate”-Governors to Governors, politicians to politicians and so on.
It is essential to note that before one thinks or considers settling down, money should be the least on one’s mind but consider God and the true feelings of oneself towards the other. If the right things are done and put in place, marital problems like divorce and competition would reduce to a minimum level, so also will the economy of the country as the wealth of the rich would circulate instead of remaining stagnate on top.