Mining Cabinet Secretary Salim Mvurya has asked a Kakamega court to appoint a mediator to help resolve a dispute he has with his daughter after she sued him for neglect.
In an application filed before the Kakamega Chief Magistrate's court, the CS who has been sued by his firstborn daughter Yvonne Anono Omanzi, expressed willingness to support her even as she is an adult.
He said his 29-year-old daughter resorted to legal action without engaging him first even though he was willing to support her as long as the support she requested was “reasonable”.
“Parental financial responsibility typically concludes at the age of 18, whereas she is 29. Nevertheless, the applicant (Mvurya) does not oppose extending assistance to the respondent (Omanzi) as he is driven by his moral compassion rather than an obligation rooted in legality,” Mvurya said through his lawyer Peter Wanyama.
He added: “Because of the nature of the dispute, it is imperative that mediation be conducted by a court-appointed mediator and a report filed to enable the court to fashion an appropriate remedy.”
However, Omanzi was uncomfortable with Mvurya's application saying she feels the CS is trying to evade the matter. She said she feels the case is likely to collapse if is taken out of court.
The woman cited instances where Mvurya allegedly blocked her from his life. "It was not until I brought the matter to court that he decided that he wanted mediation," Omanzi said in her affidavit filed by lawyer Edwin Wafula.
She added: “When my father became CS, I solicited bus fare and went to his office to seek help from him. Upon introducing myself at the said office, I was informed that stern instructions had been issued by Mvurya declaring me a persona non grata at the said office.”
“I was escorted out of his office by his security and warned not to appear there again.”
Omanzi said she fears that the out-of-court mediation that the CS is seeking would be fruitless as Mvurya also blocked his lawyer’s (Wafula) calls.
She said it was after tirelessly trying to have the issue resolved out of court without success that she launched the suit before a Kakamega court.
“It is after the defendant (Mvurya) declined to engage my lawyer that I decided to move the court for recourse,” she says.
Ms Omanzi sued her father on June 2 saying the CS was no longer interested in her well-being even though he is a “man of means”.
“The plaintiff (Ms Omazi) has acknowledged that she is an adult but further avers that she has demonstrated special circumstances that require assistance from the defendant (Mvurya),” Wafula said.
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She explains the special circumstances were that after completion of her secondary education, Mvurya, who she argues has never disputed that she is his daughter, made a verbal promise to educate her through college but he later went mute.
Omanzi says she took the promise as he “had been sparingly supporting” her upkeep since birth but suddenly withdrew the goodies when she completed high school and picked an ID card.
She now holds that since her father promised to educate her and that he has been fortunate enough to land lucrative jobs, she should share his fortunes even in her adulthood.
“Mvurywa is a man of means having been a governor of Kwale County and is currently serving as CS Mining, Blue Economy and Maritime Affairs. Due to the apparent special circumstances, I am entitled to maintenance and sustenance from the CS,” she said in her suit.
Ms Omanzi, a waitress at a hotel in Kakamega where she earns Sh4,500 per month, says in her court papers that she lives in a one-roomed mabati house and is in dire need of help.