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I almost went insane: How millions ruined our marriage – Jelimo’s ex

 Jelimo with her ex husband Murrey [Photo: Courtesy]

Peter Kiprotich Murrey, former Olympic champ Pamela Jelimo’s ex-hubby, blames fame and fortune for their failed marriage, saying money turned their simple but happy union into a complicated relationship full of “unnecessary and malicious” friends and confidants.

“We moved from an almost invisible couple, to this famous and wealthy couple by Kenyan standards. Suddenly, we had too many friends and advisers, most of whom we had not associated with at all before the money and fame.

 “My wife, one I had lived with in times of poverty and need, could not trust me with anything. I could not understand the woman I had known since our time in high school,”  lamented Murray.

But when contacted by The Nairobian, the former athlete who has been underground since her bid to defend her Olympic title in London flopped - she limped home last - declined an interview, saying she wants to live her life in privacy.

Murrey claimed that Jelimo, the 2008 IAAF Golden League 800m champion, went to great lengths to secretly acquire property in her own name without his knowledge or blessings as the man of the house.

“We would sit and make plans to invest, only to discover later that my wife had already secretly acquired property with the help of lawyers and put everything in her name. I had nothing, not even the house we lived in together,” he complained.

Murrey claims he was forced to use Jelimo’s high maintenance cars to run personal errands because he did not own one himself and “felt like a squatter” in his own house.

“I did not even partly own the house we lived in. It was almost like she was preparing for our separation,” he said, laughing sardonically.

Murray claims his marriage to the million dollar athlete was born of a fairy tale. Theirs was a long distance relationship, a village romance that blossomed from a common love for athletics.

Despite Murrey’s determination to uphold his lifelong commitment to the 800m champion, their marriage hit the rocks in 2012, ending in a bitter separation on Friday, October 26, that year.

“The year 2012 will remain my darkest. I lost my wife and almost lost my life and sanity,” he says.

Disagreements on how to divide property they had acquired during their marriage led to a publicised court case that is yet to be concluded.

Murrey who claims he has never met Jelimo since their separation, denied claims he had cheated on his ex-wife.

“We had an honest relationship, I would tell my ex-wife everything. Lies about my alleged infidelity were propagated by our enemies,” says the man who has re-married and has one child.

Murrey alleges that Jelimo put the final nail in their matrimonial coffin when she  refused to have children.

“I always wanted children. But she would shut me out every time I wanted us to discuss children,” he claims. 

The 800m champion’s ex-husband says he is happy without Jelimo, but reveals that the journey to finding his happiness has been a difficult one. He came close to losing his “sanity and life” after the separation with Jelimo, whom he accuses of treating him like a ‘personal donkey’, and leaving him with nothing despite his efforts.

“I gave her all of me. Apart from being her husband, I was her training mate, athletics adviser and coach. When our marriage ended, I left our home with nothing but my clothes,” recalls a bitter Murrey, who however, recovered and turned his focus to reconstructing his life.

“I did not fear being broke, that is what I had been all my life before the million dollars. I was determined to bounce back,” he said with a smile.

Having graduated from Moi University with a criminology and public administration degree, Murrey started his own consultancy, advising clients on how to go about court procedure among other issues and “when business was low, I would secure short term contracts to drive clients to various destinations.” 

Murrey finally got a job with the Nandi County Government as an enforcement officer. With his new found freedom, he remarried and had the child he yearned for.

“I have never had the opportunity to meet my ex-wife face-to-face since that fateful day in 2012. I can confidently say however, that I have no interest in meeting her ever again,” says Murrey.

And yet, he is still saddened by his old flame’s flagging fortunes on the track.

“Despite our separation, I would love to see her succeed as a runner. This has not been the case and it is regrettable. She had such promising talent...” he said.

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