Following the enactment of the new Kano Mandatory Premarital Law, it is now compulsory for couples intending to marry in Kano to undergo premarital medical screening, reports Daily Trust Saturday,Daily Trust reports.

The law mandates that no wedding can take place in Kano State without presenting a health screening certificate for genotype, hepatitis B and C, HIV/AIDS, and other related conditions.

Governor Abba Kabir Yusuf, upon signing the law in Kano, emphasized the need for faithful implementation to uphold the sanctity of marriages in Kano State and ensure the birth of healthy children free from preventable illnesses.

This law aims to reduce the likelihood of children being born with health issues such as sickle cell anemia, HIV/AIDS, and hepatitis.

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This initiative aligns with the Kano State governor’s commitment to enhancing healthcare and creating a conducive environment for the sector, aiming to make Kano free from or significantly reduce health challenges.

The law also prohibits any discrimination or stigmatization against individuals living with HIV/AIDS, sickle cell anemia, hepatitis, and related conditions.

Additionally, the law forbids the formalization of any marriage contract without a test certificate from a government-approved health facility.

Violations of the law are considered offenses, with penalties upon conviction including fines up to N500,000, a minimum of five years imprisonment, or both.

Section 9(1) of the law states: “Any person who contravenes any of the provisions of this law commits an offense and shall on conviction be liable to a fine, which may amount to N500,000 or imprisonment of not less than five years or both.”

In discussions with Daily Trust, stakeholders expressed varied opinions on the law. Dr. Abdurrahman Ahmad Tijjani, a medical practitioner at Murtala Mohammed Specialist Hospital, Kano, welcomed the law, calling it a positive development.

He said, “It is very important, considering that certain diseases are easily transmitted. The recommended tests, including genotype, hepatitis B and C, and sickle cell anemia, are crucial for intending couples.”

He added, “Caring for people with these conditions is very expensive. In Africa, due to limited facilities and medicines, individuals with these diseases often have shorter lifespans compared to those in Europe.”

However, a renowned Islamic scholar from Bayero University, Kano, who requested anonymity, argued that the law was introduced too hastily. He suggested a gradual implementation, similar to how the Glorious Qur’an incrementally prohibited intoxicants and fornication. He recommended targeting high-prevalence areas first and consulting with Islamic scholars and traditional rulers.

Sheikh Isa Abba Umar Madabo, Chief Imam of Shehu Usman Danfodio Jumat Mosque, supported the law, noting that his mosque requires test certificates for weddings. “Islam aims to protect lives, and the purpose of marriage is to ensure the couple’s happiness. If one partner is sick, marital life can be difficult.”

Malam Hamza Nata’ala, a father of a bride, welcomed the law but suggested that the government should make the medical screenings free or highly subsidized since they are conducted at government-recognized facilities.

Muhammad Sadisu, a prospective groom, shared that his wedding was canceled due to incompatible medical results indicating a risk of having a sickle cell carrier child.

Alhaji Usman Yau Magashi, another prospective bride’s father, supported the law for its potential to reduce the number of children with sickle cell in the state. He also advised the government to support intending couples financially to make the tests free, considering the economic situation.


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