Discrimination against Female and Widow in Inheritance of Real Estate and Succession in the South Eastern Nigeria: A Breach of International Instrument and the Nigeria Constitution

Hilary Nwaechefu, Stephen Timiebiowei Kalama


There is no doubt that the issue of the right of a female child or a widow to inheritance and succession among the Igbo nation in the South Eastern part of Nigeria is somewhat disturbing to every kind and compassionate human heart. There has not been any specific local legislation addressing issues arising on the mode of inheritance and succession in the south eastern Nigeria when a man dies intestate. This paper critically looked at the dilemma and plights of women when their fathers or husbands die intestate among the Igbo nation in the South Eastern part of Nigeria. This paper relied on judicial decisions, as well as relevant text and articles on the subject of female right to inheritance. This paper noted that despite several judicial decisions giving females the right to inheritance, a lot of enlightenments and other steps enunciated by this paper need to be embarked upon to see that the female child or a widow is no longer excluded or marginalized in property inheritance.This paper recommends amongst other things, the need for domestication in the various Houses of Assembly in south Eastern Nigeria, the judgments of the Apex court that gave females the right toinheritance during intestacy of either father or husband as the case may be.

Keywords: succession, inheritance, customary law, real estate, intestacy.

DOI: 10.7176/JLPG/81-06

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ISSN (Paper)2224-3240 ISSN (Online)2224-3259

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