Close relatives are up in arms against a senior medic in a case in which he has refused to bury his wife.
Dr Patrick Wambasi’s children, his brothers and mother-in-law are demanding that he should observe Bukusu traditions and inter his wife’s remains.
In what has turned out to be him against close relatives, Dr Wambasi, who is attached to Webuye Sub-County Hospital, has been sued by his mother-in-law Gladys Chai, who wants the court to force him to bury her daughter. The case is before Eldoret Resident Magistrate Diana Milimo.
Ms Chai, who is represented by lawyer Geoffrey Okara, told the court that Dr Wambasi married Florence Chai in 1998 and that dowry was paid in full according to Bukusu traditions.
“It is taboo and against traditions of the Bukusu community for parents to bury a daughter who is legally married. If we do that, we will be inviting a curse in our family,” she told the court.
She also wants the court to prevail upon the doctor to cater for treatment expenses and the mortuary bills incurred at the Moi Teaching and Referral Hospital. Her body is at the MTRH where she died while undergoing treatment a month ago.
Dr Wambasi’s children have already testified against him, saying they did not want to be subjected to a curse owing to his failure to bury their mother.
One of Dr Wambasi’s daughters told the court last week that if their mother is not buried at her matrimonial home, they will be subjected to a curse and may have problems in their marriages in the future.
“Some of the defence witnesses we are seeing in this court are not elders from our community; these are procured witnesses,” Dr Wambasi’s elder son told the court.
The doctor, who said he has 30 children with different wives, yesterday told the court that he was not willing to bury her, saying she had destroyed her matrimonial hut after they separated five years ago.
The doctor had earlier claimed that his wife had been married to someone else before he met her and that the previous husband should bury her.
“Your honour, if I bury the deceased in my homestead, I will be inviting the spirit of death to consume me together with my entire family,” Dr Wambasi told the court.