Court backs child bride in failed reconciliation

Sun, 28 Jan 2018 09:34:54 +0000


A LOCAL court in Lusaka has said that Government does not allow child marriages and that even in the villages chiefs have warned against the practice.

Senior Court Magistrates Miyanda Banda, Pauline Newa and Ronnie Shafwensha at Matero Local Court said this in a case in which Joseph Kalinda, 23, of George compound sued Bertha Kalinda, 17, for reconciliation after separating since November 2017.

The two got married in 2015 and they have one child. Dowry was paid.

Kalinda told the court that he was a barber when he married Bertha and that whenever he asked her to help him sell beer in their  makeshift  stall, she would refuse and said that he was troubling her.

He explained that Bertha left him and went to her parents and that she started work at the industries.

Kalinda said that Bertha told him to look for other women and that she left him on four occasions accusing him of being a casanova.

In defence, Bertha said that she did not want to reconcile with Kalinda because when he started going out with trucks, he started talking to girlfriends on the phone in her presence.

She explained that when she complains about girlfriends Kalinda beats her and that it is the reason she goes to her parents.

Bertha added that the last time she left Kalinda was because he proposed love to her elder sister and that he even sent her a love message. “I found a message from Kalinda’s girlfriend on his phone asking him when they are going to make love. The other girlfriend was asking when they are going to get married,” said Bertha. Bertha said that she did not want to reconcile with Kalinda because he is a casanova and she can die of HIV or beatings. Bertha also said that she wanted to go back to school because she passed grade nine and Kalinda promised her to take her to school but he didn’t.

The court said that Bertha was still young and that the government did not allow child marriages, adding that even in the villages, chiefs were against the practice. The court said that there was no marriage and that it was defilement because Bertha was a minor at 15-years-old when she was impregnated and that if Kalinda insisted he should be reported to police for it was defilement.

The court ruled a failed reconciliation.

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