A 29-YEAR-OLD marriage has collapsed after a husband, who has been looking after his two late brothers’ wives, sired a child with one of the widows.
The case was revealed in a High Court decree of divorce granted to the man, Tapson Chivanga, against his wife, Grace Mwakurudza.
Chivanga and Mwakurudza have been married since 1995, in terms of the Marriages Act Chapter 37, now Marriages Act Chapter 5:11.
Four children were born out of their marriage.
Mwakurudza left Chivanga accusing him of having adulterous affairs with his brothers’ widows.
She claimed Chivanga did not only assume the responsibility to look after his late brother’s widows and children but was cohabiting with them too.
Mwakurudza contested the divorce claiming their relationship had not irretrievably broken down. She said she only left when Chivanga moved in with one of his late young brother’s wives. She prayed for the dismissal of the divorce claim. In his submissions, Chivanga admitted siring the child 13 years later after his late brother’s death.
He said he exhausted all channels to persuade his wife to return home but she refused.
“He indicated that he made three attempts to persuade her to come back after she deserted the rural home.
“Further, that thereafter he informed her that he was taking the legal recourse for an immediate divorce to which she agreed.
He pointed out that his brothers passed away and he assumed the responsibility of looking after their children who were all going to school, taking care of the widow and Mwakurudza was not in support of the role he assumed,” reads Justice Fatima Maxwell’s findings.
During their marriage the two acquired various properties, including three stands in Chikanga 1 and 2 Mutare, a farm under the Chipinge Rural District Council and 14 herd of cattle.
“Having found that Mwakurudza did not claim a share of Stand 631 Chikanga Phase 1, Mutare, nor compensation for her contribution to the development of Stand No. 3054 Chikanga 2, Mutare, I make the following order:
“A decree of divorce be and is hereby granted. Mwakurudza’s counter claim be and is hereby dismissed.”