A Nairobi court on Tuesday dismissed a divorce case filed by Aldai MP Maryanne Kitany against newly named Agriculture Cabinet Secretary Mithika Linturi.
Milimani chief magistrate Heston Nyaga dismissed the case, saying Ms Kitany failed to prove that she was legally married to the former Meru senator.
Ms Kitany moved to court seeking protection after the former legislator threw her out of the house.
The magistrate said witnesses called by the MP could not agree on the exact dates when the alleged customary marriage took place.
Ms Kitany had claimed that she got married to Mr Linturi in 2016 after undergoing the Nandi and Meru customary marriage.
She claimed that the former MP paid a dowry of Sh100,000 on top of other goodies for her hand in marriage. The court, however, said Mr Linturi was still married to another woman identified as Mercy Kiamenyi and the customary marriage claimed by Ms Kitany could not suffice.
“The court sympathises with the applicant who believed that she was validly married to Hon. Franklin Mithika Linturi,” the magistrate said as he dismissed the case.
Ms Kitany through her advocate applied for the suspension of the decision, pending appeal. A ruling on the application will be made on Friday.
Among those who testified in support of Ms Kitany were an uncle – Mr Andrew Chepkwony and her mother Rhoda Kitany.
Mr Chepkwony told the court that he and other elders called Linturi aside, before bequeathing their daughter to him, and asked him why he didn't have a wife at his age.
He said Mr Linturi requested to pay the dowry in cash instead of the cows and sheep. Mr Chepkwony took up the role of a father after the death of Kitany's biological father.
Mr Linturi had disputed the marriage claims and maintained that he was married to Ms Kaimenyi.
He said he only hosted her on compassionate grounds after she lost her job in 2017 as chief of staff at Deputy President William Ruto’s office.
He said he met her in 2013 and she pleaded to be accommodated temporarily in one of his houses and be allowed to establish a small office in one of the rooms.
She said before getting married, they had cohabited in her house in Kileleshwa and they later bought the Mae Ridge Villa property in 2015 and the architectural drawings were under her name and that she supervised the construction.