In a rather unexpected maintenance case, a married woman applied for maintenance for her two-year-old son from her ex-lover, claiming that he is the father of the child.

Francisca Musundire who is married to and living with her husband Tammy Mahara dragged her former lover Archbold Mukatshelwa to the Mutare Civil Court insisting that he is the father of her son. Musundire told the court, that she had a brief relationship with Mukatshelwa after she had temporarily separated from her husband Mahara. She said that the relationship resulted in the birth of her now 2-year-old son.

Musundire went on to say that her husband, who works as money-changer in the Mutare Central Business District is having challenges in taking care of the child, whom he knows not to be his.

Reports Indicate that Musundire told the court,

“I pray for Mukatshelwa to take care of our two-year-old baby. I am staying with my husband and sometimes it is difficult for him to take care of another man’s child.

“Sometimes he refuses to take care of the child especially now when he is not feeling well. I need money to buy medication and take the child to Harare for specialised medical attention and I cannot raise it anywhere,”

Mukatshelwa on the other hand challenged the maintenance claim saying that the paternity of the child is doubtful. He challenged his former lover to prove that he is indeed the father through DNA tests.

Through his lawyer, Mr Chris Ndlovu of Ndlovu and Gonese Legal Practitioners, Mukatshelwa also argued that the DNA tests should be done at Musundire’s expense since she is the one claiming that the child is his, and not her husband’s.

“Musundire should prove at her own expense that the child does not belong to her husband, but to my client. That can only be done through DNA tests,”

Presiding magistrate Lazarus Murendo ruled that the paternity of the child should be established first before the court can grant a maintenance order. He said that Mahara and Mukatshelwa need to undergo DNA tests to establish if the baby is Mukatshelwa’s as Musundire is claiming.

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