Court grants Canadian 28 hours with daughter

Canadian (R) and his ex Kenyan wife before Lady Justice Mugure Thande where they are fighting for custody of their six years old daughter. [Photo: Joackim Bwana/Standard]

The High Court has allowed a Canadian to spend four hours every day with his daughter at the home of a woman he divorced three years ago.

The man is seeking custody of the minor. He has asked Kenyan courts to enforce an order he says he obtained from a Canadian court granting him custody of the child.

Yesterday, the court allowed the man to be visiting the woman's home to spend time with the girl for the next seven days before he returns to Canada.

He said he last saw his daughter when she was two-years-old in Canada. This was before they separated and later he and the Kenyan woman got divorced. The woman moved back to Kenya with the child.

The man says his daughter holds a Canadian citizenship and should live with him in Canada. However, his former wife says the child was born in Mombasa but has dual citizenship.

On Tuesday evening the Canadian was relieved when Justice Mugure Thande granted him visitation rights.

The judge said he should visit his daughter at his former wife's home under supervision of lawyers from both sides. The order will only last the seven days.

Hearing next year

Hearing of the application for a Kenyan court to enforce an order granting him custody of the girl will be next year.

The man told Justice Thande he had been denied access to his daughter and that he could not even chat with her on Skype despite his attempts to do so for the past 14 months.

“I just wanted her to know I love her and that I am her dad. I wish to spend more time with her. That is fair enough,” said the Canadian.

Thande ordered the girl’s mother and her parents to allow the Canadian to visit her at their homestead.

The man had travelled with his parents from Canada in search of his daughter and hopefully get custody.

He, however, burst into tears when his daughter rejected him. He tried to hug her but she declined and ran back to her mother.

The man's parents watched helplessly as their son went through the agony of being rejected by his daughter. 

He tried to entice her with toys, which she took, but  returned to her mother.

Reach a consensus

Later, Justice Thande helped the parties reach a consensus to have the Canadian see the child for a week before she proceeds for holiday with her mother.

Mark Igunze, the man's lawyer, and his former wife's lawyer Michael Oloo agreed that he be allowed to visit her.

“The father shall visit the daughter at her home from 2pm to 6pm from December 18 to 24, and shall be accompanied by his parents. They shall not leave the homestead with the girl,” said Thande.