A SOMBRE mood filled the courtroom when Luanshya magistrate Henry Aongola dismissed an application by Copperbelt bodybuilder Henry Kanyimbwa to grant him an injunction against his wife Stellar Mwanjabantu, a police officer.
In this case, Kanyimbwa, who is by bodybuilding standards is the strongest man on the Copperbelt, was seeking an order of injunction to restrain Mwanjabantu from residing at his house number 4227 in Mikomfwa township pending dissolution of their marriage in the lower courts.
When the matter came up for judgment yesterday, magistrate Aongola ruled that separating the couple that was married under customary law technically meant divorcing them.
He said the plaintiff should have sued for divorce rather than separation.
The court had earlier on Thursday granted the order for Mwanjabantu to leave the matrimonial home pending determination of the order of marriage separation in court to which she obliged and shifted into an institution house within Luanshya police camp.
"An injunction is not a right and is only done at the discretion of the court on conviction that there is cause for such an action to be taken," ruled magistrate Aongola.
He said in that case, separation could only be granted if the plaintiff suffered irreparable damage.
"In this case, Henry applied for an injunction to restrain his wife from staying together at their matrimonial home...I am at great pains to establish whether the injury the plaintiff suffered is irreparable. The mere fact that this marriage has experienced a Tsunami does not warrant a separation," he said.
Magistrate Aongola ruled that "maybe the plaintiff should have sued under the revised Anti-gender based violence Act for his application to be sustained".
"In short, I am saying that the two parties should continue living together until marriage is dissolved in the local court. Go in peace, marriage is meant to be enjoyed for better, for worse, and what you are going through now is the 'worse' part, the 'better' part will come soon, God bless you," he ruled as the courtroom dominated by the plaintiff's relatives and sympathisers went into still-silence in disbelief.
After judgment was passed, Kanyimbwa said in an interview that he felt insecure and that his life was in danger because his wife's abuse and violence towards him had just been legalised by the court.
"Because immediately my family members see her return, they will run away and this judgment means that she now has the power to do anything to me. She really punches me and I can't hit back because of my ethics and strong belief in Christianity, that is what we are lamenting. I can't live with her," said a visibly shocked Kanyimbwa as he held back tears.
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