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A Woman Can Not Sue Another Woman For Adultery, Says Chief Makoni

A Woman Can Not Sue Another Woman For Adultery, Says Chief Makoni

A woman from Headlands in Manicaland Province was left disappointed last week after she approached a traditional court with the intention of suing her husband’s alleged mistress.

Resinita Makukutu appeared before Chief Makoni’s court seeking the court to order Nyasha Nyarai of Zambara Village, Headlands to pay her three beasts as compensation for allegedly dating her husband.

Makukutu is legally married to Jefter Makukutu under Chapter 5.11.

She, however, left Chief Makoni’s court empty-handed after she was advised to approach the High Court for recourse.

Nyarai absconded the court hearing.

Sometime in 2022, Nyarai’s husband dragged Makukutu’s husband to the same court, accusing him of dating his wife but the case was dismissed due to lack of evidence.

Resinita alleged that she once confronted Nyarai over the issue and she promised to end the relationship, but their affair is still on. She said:

Nyarai has been dating my husband, Jefter Makukutu, since 2014. I came across some love messages on my husband’s phone.

The woman’s husband once reported my husband to this court over the two’s illicit affair but the case was thrown out due to lack of evidence.

Nyarai and her husband have since divorced because of this affair and she has relocated to South Africa.

I have messages that I extracted from my husband’s phone where he was chatting with Nyarai’s aunt.

My husband listed down what he had bought for Nyarai when she wanted to end the relationship.

He was complaining to her aunt. Jefter bought a fridge, a cow, five goats and clothes for her.

He sent Nyarai’s kids to school and spruced up her parent’s homestead. He even promised to buy her a residential stand in Marondera.

Resinita added that she is married to Makukutu under Chapter 5.11 and wanted to be compensated with three herd of cattle.

However, the court ruled that she had brought her case before the wrong court.

Chief Makoni ruled that a woman cannot sue another woman for adultery in a community court. He said:

If you are married under Chapter 5.11 of the Marriage Act, this community court cannot hear your case. Only the High Court has the authority to preside over disputes emanating from the said Act.

Community courts preside over customary marriage issues. Keep the evidence you have and Nyarai’s former husband will be your key witness at the High Court.

However, even if you were married under customary law, this court was not going to handle the matter. Men are allowed to marry as many wives as they want.

That is acceptable and normal traditionally. A woman cannot sue another woman for adultery in a community court.

The Marriages Act, which came into operation in September 2022, recognises the following types of marriages:

  • A civil marriage which is a monogamous marriage between a man and a woman.
  • A registered customary marriage which is potentially polygamous and done according to customary rites.
  • A qualified marriage which is a union contracted according to religious rites which is not registrable as civil or customary marriage and is potentially polygamous.

| The Manica Post

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