Marriage is meant for different ethnic groups. Each ethnic group often has its own marriage system therefore there are different systems of marriage. These depend on the customs and traditions of each group, religion, etc. Each system of marriage has its own acceptable procedures. The common systems of marriage include:
1. Traditional or customary marriage:
This is marriage entered into according to native laws and customs. It differs from one area to another. This there are traditional marriage customs for the world's population. Within each group there may also be varieties of marriage customs. Traditional marriage can be either:
- Monogamous; where one man marries one wife.
- Polygamous; where one man marries many wives.
It is a common practice for people to perform the traditional marriage rites first and then carry out the other forms such as the church marriage or court marriage.
2. Marriage under the ordinance:
This is also called "court marriage" because it is contracted in the court before a court registrar. Characteristics or features of marriage under ordinance include:
- it does not allow either of the couples (husband or wife) to enter into a second marriage, unless at the death or official divorce of one.
- it is a monogamous form of marriage.
- a marriage ordinance certificate is given to the couple who marry this way.
- it is provided by government and open to all religious sects and tribes.
3. Church marriage:
This is a form of marriage under ordinance. It is contracted in a church. Christians perform church marriage. It is a monogamous form of marriage, where a man marries only one wife.
4. Moslem or Islamic marriage:
This is contracted in the ways stipulated by Islam. Moslem men are each allowed to marry more than one wife. It is a polygamous form of marriage.