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Court gives children nod to bury mother

By Anne Atieno | April 18th 2020

A court in Kisumu has given three children the right to bury their mother, whose body has been lying in the mortuary since March 30 because of a court battle.

Their mother’s in-laws wanted to bury her and block the children from attending the burial.

Senior Resident Magistrate Fatuma Rashid ruled that the children of the deceased were closest to her in legal terms despite the dead having acquired a new status by leaving her home in 2001.

“I am on the view children are closest to her in legal terms and therefore have the right to bury the deceased ahead of any other claimant,” Ms Rashid ruled.

The children of the deceased - Jackline Achieng, Dorine Otieno and Shalfree Ouma - stated that after their father’s death in 1999, their mother faced hardships that made her move out in 2001. She got remarried to their late step-father, Naaman Aduda.

“Due to cultural and domestic problems at her matrimonial home, she made a decision to get married to my late step-father,” they stated in a written statement.

Their mother and step-father set up a matrimonial home in Nyalunya, Kolwa in Kisumu County in 2006 where their late step-father paid two cows, one goat and Sh20,000 as dowry. Their step-father died in 2014 and was buried in Nyalunya.

“The plaintiffs herein have no right to claim any burial rights on the body of our mother,” Aduda’s children stated.

Their in-laws, Grace Akinyi and Owuor Oloo, had moved to court on March 30, with claims the children had refused to comply with their wish to bury the late at her former home. 

They wanted to be given the deceased body for burial, be given her burial permit, death certificate and any other documents that touched on her death and burial.

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