The High Court has ordered the arrest of a 15-year-old girl who eloped with her “husband” despite her father’s opposition.
The girl’s father sued her after she dropped out of school to “marry” a truck driver in 2014.
When her father finally traced her to her “husband’s” house in Mombasa, she declared that she was not going back home, insisting that she was an adult and that nothing could separate her from the love of her life.
The “husband’s” age is not indicated on court records.
The father somehow managed to convince the girl to sit her Kenya Certificate of Primary Education (KPCE) examination the same year. Despite having been out of school for some time, the girl scored 243 marks.
Although two secondary schools in Mombasa were willing to admit her in Form One, the girl refused to continue with education, opting instead to return to her “husband”.
Behind her father’s back, the girl went ahead to obtain a National Identity Card long before reaching the age of 18.
The father, named in court papers as CLS, ended up seeking the court’s help after the girl and her “husband”, named as a Mr Mwangi, failed to heed his plea that she finishes school first and get married when she is mature enough.
According to the father, the girl is bright enough to study all the way to university.
When CLS filed the case in 2016, the girl had already lived with the man for two years.
Justice Erick Ogola then ordered Mwangi to appear before him and explain why he had married a minor.
On April 12, 2017, the girl appeared in court carrying her baby. She told the court that she was an adult, a married woman, living in her own house and that she was mature enough to make her own decisions.
During the hearing, her father insisted that the girl was not capable of getting married as she was still under 18.
The girl responded by tabling a National identification card (ID).
Faced with hard choices; a desperate parent seeking to secure his daughter’s future and a defiant minor insisting she was an adult, the court declined to grant the father’s plea.
Instead, it ordered for investigations into how the girl obtained the ID.
On February 19 this year, the court received a letter from Ministry of Interior and Co-ordination of National Government, which revealed that the girl had told the Registrar of Persons that she was born on February 14, 1998.
In her application for an ID, she also lied about her parents, indicating their names as John Mwangi Kiarie and Nancy Njoki. Despite being born and raised in Mombasa, she indicated that her home is Turi in Nakuru County.
The court ruled that the ID was a fraud.
“It is clear that the person who gave the information had the sole intention to hide the true age of the minor, and her family tree so as to hold out the minor as an adult who could be married,” Justice Ogola observed.
Last week, Justice Ogola ordered the arrest and charging of the girl’s “husband”.
The judge further ordered that the girl be arrested and brought to court after which she will be taken to a children’s home for counseling.
The judge said the girl was incapable of getting married, and that her “husband” should not be seen anywhere near her at any time.