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» » Magistrate saves ‘wife snatcher’ from Chief Gutu’s wrath

Precila Takabvirakare

- Chief Gutu, Amon Masanganise, who on October 5, 2017 fined Paul Chingwaru three cattle for allegedly siring a child with a married woman, had his ruling overturned by Gutu magistrate Edwin Marecha.
Chingwaru was last year brought before Chief Gutu's traditional court to answer a case reported by Stanley Mashove who accused him of engaging in an adulterous affair with Theresa Marebe, whom he claimed was his wife.
Chief Gutu found Chingwaru guilty and ordered him to pay three beasts to Mashove as compensation, but he challenged the judgement at the magistrates' court.
On January 15, 2018, magistrate Marecha said Chief Gutu's court erred in giving a ruling 'without proper investigations'.
The court found that Mashove and Marebe were never married but they just cohabitated together and sired two children.  
"It is unfortunate that Chief Gutu, who is the custodian of customs, failed to do a thorough investigation before giving judgement. The judgement he gave is ultra vires African customs that are the cornerstone of his court," said Marecha.
He also added that Chief Gutu should have established if there was indeed a valid marriage between Mashove and Marebe by consulting with Marebe's parents and other people who could have known about the nature of the two's relationship.local

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