The Positive Provisions In The 'Controversial' Marriages Bill - Report

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The Positive Provisions In The 'Controversial' Marriages Bill - Report

The much-maligned Marriages Bill contains some progressive provisions, according to a commentator writing in the NewsDay.

Various church groups have condemned the Bill as retrogressive, saying that it promotes immorality and destroys the sanctity of marriage.

One of the main positive characteristics of the Marriage Bill, according to the columnist, is that it merges all marriage laws into one. These are:

  1. The Marriage Act (Chapter 5.11) – which governs civil marriages.
  2. Customary Marriages Act (Chapter 5.07) – covering the customary law marriage
  3. Married Persons Property Act – detailing the marital property regime
  4. Matrimonial Causes Act – regulating property distribution, maintenance and other issues upon dissolution of marriage.
  5. Customary Law and Local Courts Act – which has provisions regulating customary law applicable to marriage.
  6. Administration of Estates Act
  7. Criminal Law (Codification and Reform) Act, which defines and imposes penalties for prohibited marriage (including bigamy)
  8. Domestic Violence Act, which penalises forced marriage and pledging of girls into marriage.

Some of the pros identified in the Bill include outlawing same-sex marriages, raising the minimum age of marriage to 18, it ranks all different kinds of marriages as being equal, and gives chiefs the power to play the role of marriage officer.

More: NewsDay



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