Relatives in trouble for accepting bride price for niece they did not raise

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A Makoni man who took care of his maternal granddaughter since birth up to the time of her marriage has dragged his grandchild’s paternal relatives to court after they received her bride price.

Sekuru Lazarus Washa dragged Alois Musariri to Chief Makoni’s community court expressing his displeasure over the matter.

The court heard that Alois’ late brother imprǝgnɑted Sekuru Washa’s daughter and went on to neglect the child.

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Sekuru Washa took over in providing for his grandchild, Nyasha Musariri.

He told the court that for the role he played in his grandchild’s life, he should also get a bigger portion of her bride price.

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“My daughter had a child with Alois’ late brother. He did not pay any bride price and passed on when my daughter was three months prǝgnɑnt. They requested the lobola list and only paid $65. I took care of Nyasha from birth up to now. In December 2021, the Musariri family informed me that Nyasha’s in-laws were visiting them for the lobola ceremony. I was surprised to hear this because for the past 23 years, I was staying with Nyasha.

“When I highlighted this, Musariri labelled me a cruel person. He accused me of having a hand in his brother’s death. The Musariris proceeded with the lobola ceremony, yet they did not pay lobola for my own daughter (Nyasha’s mother). They also did not contribute anything towards Nyasha’s upbringing,” said Sekuru Washa.

In response, Musariri said his late brother paid $65 as lobola for Nyasha’s mother before he passed on. He added that they subtracted US$400 from Nyasha’s lobola and paid the Washas for taking care of her (maredzwa).

“My late brother passed on when Nyasha’s mother was prǝgnɑnt. Nyasha grew up with the Washas, but we also assisted with money and groceries. My brother paid lobola. Although the money was not enough, he paid something.

“It was Nyasha who directed her husband to us. It is not us who decided to have the mɑrriɑgǝ ceremony done at our homestead. We gave them US$400 for maredzwa,” said Musariri.

The court, however, said it was improper for the Musariris to accept Nyasha’s lobola when they had not mɑrried her mother.

After deliberations, the court ordered the Musariris to pay three cattle and three goats as lobola for Nyasha’s mother.

“This is a clear case. The Musariris cannot enjoy Nyasha’s bride price when they did not pay anything for her mother. It was proved that Nyasha was raised by her maternal grandparents.

“In addition to the US$400 you gave the Washas, the court further directs you to marry Nyasha’s mother.

“Since they did not stay together for too long, you are required to pay three beasts and three goats. This will be subtracted from Nyasha’s lobola,” ruled the court.

— Manica Post


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