A court has ordered a woman in Kanungu, Uganda to pay her former fiancé more than Ush10 million ($2,700) as compensation for breach of a promise to marry him.
Court records show that Richard Tumwine and Fortunate Kyarikunda, both teachers, started their relationship in 2015, and that they later entered a marriage agreement in 2018.
The court also heard that Tumwine, a teacher, financially supported Kyarikunda including sponsoring her for a diploma in law at the Law Development Centre where he spent more than USh9.4 million ($2,500).
Kanungu Grade One Magistrate Asanasio Mukobi held that since Kyarikunda did not fulfil the promise to marry, then Tumwine is entitled to re-imbursement of his USh9.4 million spent on her.
Mr Mukobi also ordered Kyarikunda to pay USh1 million ($271) to Tumwine as general damages for inconveniences and psychological anguish suffered.
The magistrate also ordered Kyarikunda to pay legal costs incurred by Tumwine in prosecuting his case.
“I note from the exhibit that several mobile money transfer transactions from the plaintiff’s cell phone in names of Richard Tumwine to the defendant’s cell phone in names of Fortunate Kyarikunda,” the magistrate observed.
The magistrate added: “From the exhibit, it is indicated as a budget for introduction for Fortunate Kyarikunda’s parents’ home and several items worth USh5 million ($1358) are indicated on the list and the comments of the defendant appreciating the budget and requesting for more financial support to enable her go to Rubanda is clearly indicated.”
During the hearing of the case, Tumwine told the court that the introduction ceremony was slated for February 2022 but it did not take place and there was no justifiable reason given.
The court heard that Kyarikunda came up with an excuse that her parents have stated that their daughter should not get married to an older man, referring to Tumwine.
But the court held: “This is equally unreasonable, a misrepresentation and a fraud. In any case, the defendant had all the opportunity to reject the plaintiff’s love requests at the earliest point possible and avoid interfering with his financial obligations.”
The court observed that the two people were engaged in a love relationship and that from the exhibits presented, arrangements for an introduction ceremony were made.
“The defendant (Kyorikunda) suggested that it takes place in February 2022 and the said date passed despite the plaintiff’s preparations for the introduction. The excuse the defendant gave was that she could not get married to an old man, the plaintiff, as if she did not see young men during their over four years [of] courtship,” the magistrate said. - JULIET KIGONGO, The EaatAfrican