Causing Conflict Among Married People Is A Crime In Botswana
More often than not, when a marriage crashes, the couple point fingers at a certain third party(s) or external influence as the case may be that led to the end of the marriage.
If you know a marriage wrecker, you can now have them punished for their actions in a court of law in Botswana.
According to a report by The Mirror, the Francistown High Court reinstated that all marriage wreckers should be punished for their actions since marriage is a sacrosanct union that needs to be respected.
The reinstatement is coming after Justice Lot Moroka last year delivered a judgement in which he was of the view that “in light of the changing mores of our society, the delictual actio iniuriarum (an action for delict, which not only seeks to protect an individual’s dignity and reputation but also his or her physical integrity) claim based on adultery pertaining to a civil marriage lacks constitutional and common law validity”.
“Therefore, the act of adultery by a third party, lacks wrongfulness for the purposes of delictual claim of contumelia (injury or humiliation, etc) and loss of consortium and that the public dictates that it is no longer reasonable to attach delictual liability to it and thus the action is no longer sustainable,” Moroka ruled then.
Another justice of the same Francistown High Court, Justice Bashi Moesi is of a different view. Moesi who ruled in a matter involving a soldier, James Machangana who brought another man identified as Nicholas Botsho to court. Machangana is accusing Botsho of wrecking his marriage and subsequently fathering a child with his wife.
Machangana sued Botsho for the sum of P100,000 for contumelia and P50,000 for adultery and interest at the rate of 10% per annum from the date of judgement, plus costs of the suit.
In his ruling on the case, Moesi said:
“In light of the foregoing I find that at the time of the affair between the plaintiff’s wife and the defendant, the latter was aware of the woman’s marriage to the plaintiff.
My justification… is that the plaintiff’s evidence that his wife wore a wedding ring at all material times is uncontroverted.
It is highly probable that the presence of the wedding ring was apparent to the defendant, explaining why he felt the need to ascertain whether or not she had told him the truth when she informed him that her marriage was over.
The nature of the exercise, which the defendant embarked upon to ascertain whether or not the woman had told him the truth is unknown to the court, there being no facts placed before the court by the defendant.”
Moesi added that he considers the plaintiff’s damages claim as properly proven on a balance of probabilities and therefore awarded him the “general damages sought, being P100,000 and P50,000 as claimed under the two headings of contumelia and consortium respectively, together interest thereon at the rate of 10% per annum from the date of judgement plus costs of suit.”