KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — A Malaysian with three wives and 25 children is set to marry again after receiving consent from his spouses and an Islamic court, reports said Tuesday.
The Shariah High Court in eastern Terengganu state approved an application by property negotiator Abu Bakar Embong, 54, to take a fourth wife 29 years younger than him, The Star daily reported.
Muslim men can take up to four wives in Malaysia if the Shariah court believes they can provide financial and emotional care for all their spouses and children. But it is uncommon for Malaysian men to take more than one or two wives.
The court took into consideration Abu Bakar’s monthly earnings of $6,250, and the fact he had provided houses and cars for each of his three wives, the newspaper said.
Court officials or Abu Bakar could not be reached for comment Tuesday, a holiday in Terengganu.
His wives _ aged 46, 45 and 25 _ told the court they had no objections to Abu Bakar marrying Suhaili Alias, 25, because he was loving, fair and responsible, The Star said.
“We get on well and we are a cooperative. If one of us is in labor, we will be by each other’s side and every weekend, we get together with the children,” his second wife, Mazumi Ismail, 45, was quoted as saying by The New Straits Times. His children are aged between 4 months and 25 years.
Abu Bakar has pledged to treat all his spouses equally.
“As long as I can afford another wife and am strong, I don’t see why I can’t marry,” he was quoted as saying.
The Shariah Court makes rulings on personal, family and religious issues for Muslims, who comprise nearly 60 percent of Malaysia’s 27 million people.
Recently, the same court in Terengganu deferred its decision on an application by truck driver Mohamed Nor Awang, 57, to marry for the fourth time, saying it was not convinced he could financially support another wife.