HH 366-18 ALAIN JEAN GRANT versus TIRINGEI JEFTA and Ors

ALAIN JEAN GRANT

versus

TIRINGEI JEFTA

and

THE MASTER OF THE HIGH COURT

and

NELLIE TIYAGO (in her capacity as curator ad litem)

 

 

HIGH COURT OF ZIMBABWE

CHIRAWU-MUGOMBA J

HARARE, 18, 19, 20 & 28 June 2018

 

 

Opposed Application

 

G Nyamayi, for the applicant

1st & 3rd respondents in person

No appearance for the 2nd respondent

 

                CHIRAWU-MUGOMBA J: “The paradox….is that even when children are construed as rights holders, it is difficult for them to assert their rights. The reasons are practical, political and legal. Young children are completely and unavoidably dependant on those who have power over their lives (O’ Donovan: 1983)”.  I was reminded of this quote in this matter that came before me as an opposed application, misleadingly headed, “ court application for custody” when it was as a matter of fact, an application for variation of custody. Nonetheless, I adopted a robust view and heard the matter on the merits given the fact that it involves minor children. The fact that children are powerless is the more reason why this court as the upper guardian of all minor children must stand as the last bastion in defence of the rights of children.

            On 22 June 2017, this court granted a decree of divorce between the applicant and the first respondent. In that order, custody of three minor children namely M.J (born 12 August 2002); S. J (born 12 August 2007) and J.E.G (born 3 March 2011) was awarded to the first respondent with the applicant being awarded access.  In terms of the consent paper, the applicant is to be wholly responsible for the educational costs of all three minor children until 

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