Kenya legalizes polygamy

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday signed into law a contentious marriage bill which legalizes polygamy in the East African country

Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday signed into law a contentious marriage bill which legalizes polygamy in the East African country

NAIROBI – Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta on Tuesday signed into law a contentious marriage bill which legalizes polygamy in the East African country.

In a statement, the presidency said the Marriage Act 2014 recognizes monogamous, polygamous and customary marriages.

The law allows men to marry as many wives as they wish without seeking consent from their partners.

According to traditions practiced by many local tribes in Kenya, a person would always seek assent from his first wife before taking another.

Kenyan female MPs walked out of the parliament on March 21 when their male colleagues decided to amend and pass the Marriage bill.

The new law also strengthens existing laws which govern how the processes of separation and divorce are handled.

According to the statement, all marriages registered under the Act have the same legal status, both parties in a marriage have equal rights and obligations at the time of marriage, during marriage and at the dissolution of the marriage.

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