'The Marriage Bill, 2022' Proposes Couples can Only Divorce after Two Years of Marriage

The bill seeks to provide comprehensive legislation on matters relating to marriage since the Marriage Act enacted 118 years ago has not been amended.

'The Marriage Bill, 2022' Proposes Couples can Only Divorce after Two Years of Marriage
Read: 1269 times \

The Tororo District Woman MP, Hon. Sarah Opendi, has been granted leave from Parliament to introduce a Private Member’s Bill, entitled, “The Marriage Bill, 2022”.

The bill seeks to provide comprehensive legislation on matters relating to marriage since the Marriage Act enacted 118 years ago has not been amended.

Among the key issues, Opendi cites bridal gifts saying they should not be among the requirements for marriage.

The proposed law criminalizes a spouse who demands a refund of gifts with a penalty of not less than one-year imprisonment.

Opendi says this will go a long way in protecting the rights of women who are treated as property in marriage because of the bride price.

The Constitutional Appeal in  2010 ruled that bridal gifts should not be refunded.

The proposed marriage bill also permits a spouse to only apply for divorce after two years from the date of marriage.

“A spouse may apply for divorce before the expiration of the two years where the spouse can prove that he or she is suffering exceptional hardship in the marriage,” reads the proposed bill.

The propped law has provisions for the distribution of properties within a monogamous and polygamous marriage, separating the matrimonial property from the individual property.

In the case of a polygamous marriage, matrimonial property acquired by the husband and the first wife shall be owned in common, and the subsequent wives will only take interest in the husband’s share of the matrimonial property.

It also guides that spouses should make an agreement on property owned by both and those individually owned.

The bill further proposes that if a spouse acquired property before or during marriage and the property does not fall within the matrimonial property but his or her spouse makes a contribution towards the improvement of that property, be it monetary or in kind, the spouse shall acquire a beneficial interest equivalent to the contribution she or he made.

Download the Howwe Music App
Howwe App

MSport