Uganda Supreme Court has declared the return of bride price unconstitutional.
In 2010, Mifumi, a non governmental organization and 12 others lost a case in the Constitutional Court after failing to prove that payment of bride-price causes domestic violence in families.
The NGO then appealed to Supreme Court.
Yetserday, a panel of seven Judges of the Supreme Court led by Chief Justice Bart Katureebe delivered the ruling on Thursday.
In their ruling, the Judges noted that paying bride price is a voluntary act of appreciation that runs through many African communities.
They however, unanimously agreed that referring to bridal gifts as ‘bride price’ reduces its relevance to a mere market value.
Justice Katureebe noted that there is no market in Africa and Uganda where brides are purchased from but that the act of paying bride price is celebrated by most African and Ugandan families.
Justice Jotham Tumwesigye said it’s unfair to demand a refund of bride price from the woman’s parents after years of marriage.
He noted that it’s not likely that the parents of the woman would be keeping the property ready to refund.
The other justices who agreed with the lead judgment were; John Wilson Tsekooko, Christine Kitumba, Benjamin Odoki and Galdino Okello.
Only Justice Esther Kisaakye an opposing view.