High Court Blocks Same Clan Marriage

Audio 2

The High Court in Kampala has today blocked the planned marriage of the same clan couple.
Ivan Serunkuma, a Botswana based Ugandan doctor, intended to marry Juliet Nammazi on June 24 last year at Makerere St. Francis Church.
But the plans were thwarted after the High Court issued an injunction on June 23 stopping the wedding.
Nammazi's father, Bruno Kiwuwa, sued the couple on grounds that they were from the same clan. In His suit, Kiwuwa said that he was not consulted over the planned marriage, adding that the Ndiga (Sheep) clan, to which the couple belongs, prohibits marriages between members of the clan.
Kiwuuwa also said that the intended wedding is abominable under the Kiganda culture since the two are considered as sister and brother.
In his ruling today, the high court judge, justice Remmy Kasule, blocked the marriage on constitutional and cultural grounds.
Justice Kasule argued that the constitution of Uganda promotes culture and preserves the dignity of Ugandans and the dignity of the customary marriage.
He said it is criminal to violate the Marriage Act, which recognizes the customary law.
Justice Kasule ruled that although the couple is free to conduct marriage, as consenting adults under the written law, such a marriage would violate the customs. Same clan marriage is considered incest, as blood is too close for clansmen to be married.
Reacting to the ruling, Ivan Serunkuma's lawyer, Sam Ahamya said he respects the ruling despite the fact that the Judge dwelt more on the history of Uganda and its jurisprudence, than on the facts of the matter. He said the Judge looked at the precedent that the ruling would set for the Buganda and not on the couple.
Ahamya said he will consult his clients over the possibility of appealing against the ruling.
Bruno Kiwuwu was excited about the ruling; he said that the ruling has set a precedent for the need to respect the cutural norms in Buganda and elesewhere.
//Cue in: iMy conscience is very clear#
Cue out: #very grateful.i//