MUTINTA MULAYE writes
LUSAKA Boma Local Court Magistrate Gaston Kalala has advised two in-laws to resolve a difference they had over access to a child of a deceased woman.
This was in a case where 50-year-old Daisy Chembe of Mtendere compound sued her brother-in-law William Mwanza, 53, of PHI on grounds that he does not allow her to see his child after her sister, the child’s biological mother, died.
In her statement, Ms. Chembe told the court that when her sister died last October, she left behind a three-week-old -baby that Mr. Mwanza does not allow her to see.
She told the court that the child was later adopted at Kasisi Orphanage.
Ms Chembe however said at one time when she went to get the child before it was adopted, Mr Mwanza’s sister stopped her from getting the baby.
“Ba sister babo bana niuza ati ba Mwanza nibo vuta bana nilesa naku tenga mwana. Ninaba tumila phone siyenzo lila so mwana nina mutenga. Pomu bweza, ndiye pe benze ku fika nabeve.
“Nina pempa kuti nimutenge mwana bakalibe kumu tenga ku Kasisi bana kana (His sister told me that he is a difficult man and so she stopped me from getting the child. I phoned him but his number was not going through and so I just got the child. When I took the baby back, I found Mr Mwanza had also just arrived. I asked him if I could keep the child before the adoption by the orphanage but he refused),” Ms. Chembe stated.
She further said she had also gone to the Department of Social Welfare to get a letter to allow her visit the child at Kasisi Orphanage but Mr Mwanza told her that even to visit the child, she had to first get permission from him.
In his defence, Mr. Mwanza denied stopping Ms. Chembe from seeing the child.
He said the plaintiff has never personally complained to him the way she did in court and that the issue could have been resolved between the two families.
“I have my own share of weaknesses but it’s a shame that we are wasting the court’s time to discuss this. Even now they can go with my child. He belongs to all of us. They have 100 percent access to the child,” Mr Mwanza said.
He also told the court that he does not give excuses as claimed by Ms Chembe but he just makes programs that best suit the child as he is its biological father.
The court found the dispute to be a simple matter and that Mr Mwanza was right as he has the child’s best interest as the biological father. Magistrate Kalala then advised Ms Chembe and Mr Mwanza to reconcile and discuss access to the child.