Sixty-three-year-old Josephine Jepkoech, the ex-wife of prominent Uasin Gishu farmer-cum-politician Jackson Kibor, 86, has filed a petition at Eldoret High Court seeking to reverse the dissolution of her marriage.
Through her lawyer, Amos Magut, Jepkoech argued that Kibor did not prove cruelty in marriage, which the elderly man gave in court as a key ground for divorce.
Jepkoech says Eldoret Chief Magistrate, Charles Obulutsa, based his judgement on grounds which Kibor had not presented before the court.
“His judgement was based on an incident where Jepkoech screamed in court,” stated Jepkoech’s lawyer, Amos Magut.
In a written memorandum, Jepkoech is seeking the High Court to reverse the divorce – and if possible, send them back to begin a new hearing in another court, which is not presided over by Magistrate Obulutsa. A date for hearing is yet to be set.
The 51-year-old marriage between Kibor and Jepkoech was terminated on October 6.
While issuing the ruling, Magistrate Obulutsa said Kibor had tabled sufficient evidence proving that his marriage to Jepkoech had suffered irreparable damage.
In his complaint, when he filed for a divorce in October, 2016, Kibor accused his wife of cruelty, desertion and denying him conjugal rights.
Kibor’s lawyer, Mark Omolo, told the court that Jepkoech had developed a habit of traveling overseas without seeking her husband’s consent; and, in several occasions, would stay in the foreign land for close to a year without communicating to Kibor.
Kibor had also accused Jepkoech of selling 56 acres of land without his knowledge.
Speaking after the court ruling, Kibor pledged to give Jepkoech, a mother of his seven children, 10 acres of land, where “she will live for the remainder of her life”.
Kibor said following the dissolution of his marriage to Jepkoech, he will remarry, “be happy, and live longer”.
Jepkoech had been given 30 days, beginning October 6, 2017, to appeal the ruling issued by Magistrate Obulutsa.
Besides Jepkoech, Kibor has two other wives.