A frustrated man from Kenya who has been seeking to divorce his second wife for the past two years, has been once again thrown out of court after appealing against a first ruling by one of the country’s magistrate’s court that, there was no marriage to annul.
According to reports, the man identified only as JAM filed for divorce in December 2017, claiming that he married her wife, also identified as SNM in 2008, but he was no more interested in the marriage.
His reason for seeking the divorce was that, his partner who had three children before they got married is a drunkard and abusive.
“She is a drunkard, abusive and cruel to me as well as my children and my first wife. Due to her conduct, the marriage has irretrievably broken down to the extent that no amount of amends can save it.
"I can no longer bear the verbal and psychological abuses she puts me through and the marriage should therefore be dissolved,” JAM told the court.
However, the court ruled against him on the grounds that there was no document to show that the couple were legally married, neither was there any witness to the acclaimed marriage.
Unsatisfied with the verdict, JAM proceeded to the High Court in 2018 seeking to nullify the ruling of the lower court.
Interestingly, the High Court presided over by Esther Maina reportedly upheld the earlier ruling by the magistrate’s court, saying the applicant could not prove that he was married to the defendant.
“I am not persuaded that the appellant proved his case on a balance of probabilities. In the first place he did not, apart from asserting he married the respondent in April 2008, prove there was a marriage," ruled Justice Maina
Although Kenya’s Marriage Act 2014 recognises long-term cohabitation as marriage, the court said JAM could not convince it that he married SNM before the coming into effect of the law.
It further ordered the applicant to pay the defendant for the cost she incurred as a result of the divorce proceedings.