Why Mombasa judge awarded custody of child to "irresponsible, immoral" mother over mzungu lover
High Court Justice John Onyiego has for the second time ordered for a shared custody of a four-year-old child who had been earlier awarded to the father by a lower court which found the mother unfit.
His judgement is notably similar to his first in which Helen Maria Imokor failed to comply and vanished with the minor who has been missing for the better part of two weeks.
According to his earlier ruling, Justice Onyiego stated, “If any party served with this order and fails to comply, with the same, shall be cited in contempt of court and is liable for a fine or imprisonment for a period not exceeding six months or both."
It is after the law caught up with Imokor that the court delegated the lower court which promptly handed the child to then care of his father, British national Kevin Hurley who is also former Scotland Yard detective.
Mother immoral, but granted custody
However, in a petition by the mother to the high court in which Justice Onyiego delivered his ruling, the judge declared the Imokor unfit, immoral and irresponsible but went ahead and granted her shared custody.
“However,” said the judge in regards to the father, “the respondent behaved with distinction. He was responsible, caring and paid school fees for the minor, even bought him a home worth ten million Kenya shillings and is therefore best suited to be with the child.” said the judge. Justice Onyiego further went ahead and stated that the father had one limitation; “he is a tourist enjoying stay in the country on a tourist visa!”
As for the mother, the judge noted that she is a vexatious, with no respect for court orders nor officers of the court including magistrates and children’s officers.
“She exhibited a high degree of dishonesty and is an irresponsible mother who keeps different men as lovers, often in her house,” he further declared, adding that it is a lifestyle not conducive to positive development of the child.
The High Court Judge further said that she is unkind to the child whose performance drops and health deteriorates whenever he is with her. “Whenever custody was awarded to her, she disappeared to deny the father access,” in reference to the two instances she sneaked to Nigeria to hide the baby away from then father where the law caught up with her as an illegal migrant.
According to section 174 of the penal code, stealing a child which has been described as taking a minor from lawful custody carries a seven-year sentence.
The father who categorically asked the judge to recuse himself from the case for the second time said that he would appeal the ruling.
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