Former Nigerian naval Chief asks court to stop his ex-wife from using his name
Former Nigerian naval Chief asks court to stop his ex-wife from using his name

Former Nigerian naval Chief asks court to stop his ex-wife from using his name

Retired Rear Admiral Alison Madueke has petitioned the Lagos State High Court in Igbosere to stop his ex-wife and former Petroleum Minister, Diezani Alison-Madueke, from using his surname.


In a petition seeking a declaration that a marital union has ended, Rear Admiral Madueke has asked the court to order Diezani to revert to her maiden surname, Agama.

He argued that her continued use of his name amidst corruption allegations could harm his reputation and implicate him or result in mistaken liability, especially since they are no longer legally married.

Rear Admiral Madueke, who previously served as a military governor of Anambra and Imo states, married Diezani on June 30, 1999, under the Marriage Act.

He stated that his wife started gaining recognition in social and political circles through their marriage, which produced one child.

The petitioner noted that Diezani began using the name “Alison-Madueke” when she became a minister under the Jonathan Administration from 2010 to 2015.

According to the petition, filed through his lawyers Chidi Ilogu (SAN), Dr. Nasiru Tijani, and Adedamola Kikiowo, Rear Admiral Madueke's cohabitation with Diezani ended in May 2015 when she left her ministerial position and relocated to the United Kingdom.

They have lived apart since then.

Diezani filed for the dissolution of their marriage in November 2021 at the High Court of Nassarawa State sitting in Mararaba Gurku, citing an irretrievable breakdown of the union. Rear Admiral Madueke did not contest the suit, leading the court to end the marriage.

The petitioner informed the court that despite the dissolution of the marriage, Diezani has continued to use his name. "On April 13, 2022, judgment was delivered in Suit No. NSD/MG345/2021 by Hon. Justice A.A. Ozegya dissolving the marriage between the petitioner and the respondent on the ground that the marriage has broken down irretrievably. The said dissolution of marriage has now become absolute by the operation of law," he stated.

He continued, "Though the marriage has been dissolved and is now legally finalized, the respondent continues to use the petitioner’s first name (Alison) and surname (Madueke) as her own without any justification or consent from the petitioner. It is now more than two years that the respondent continues to use the name of the petitioner to his embarrassment."

Rear Admiral Madueke stated that he instructed his lawyers to write to Diezani on December 14, 2023, asking her to stop using his names and revert to her pre-marital name, Agama, but she has neither responded nor ceased using the names. He expressed concern that Diezani continues to present herself as his wife even though their marriage has legally ended.

The petitioner highlighted that Diezani is undergoing criminal trials in both Nigeria and the United Kingdom. "The respondent faces public allegations of corruption and financial misconduct, for which trials are ongoing in both countries," he said. "The persistent portrayal of the respondent as the spouse of the petitioner is creating embarrassment, a misleading impression, and tarnishing the reputation, integrity, and public image of the petitioner."

He added that Diezani's continued use of his name poses a significant risk of legal and financial harm. "Given the ongoing public allegations and trials concerning the respondent’s alleged misconduct, this association with the petitioner’s name could lead to mistaken liability or even implicate the petitioner in these legal issues," he noted.

Rear Admiral Madueke is seeking a perpetual injunction to restrain Diezani from using his names and to prevent her from asserting the existence of their marriage. He also requested an order directing Diezani to revert to her pre-marital surname, Agama, and to publish in a national newspaper in both Nigeria and the UK that she has stopped using Alison-Madueke.

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