South Africa: Muslim Marriages - Women's Legal Centre Says Judgment Is of 'Great Significance'

Photo: Pixabay
Muslim wedding.

The Women's Legal Centre (WLC) has welcomed the Western Cape High Court judgment which found that the state was obliged to introduce legislation to recognise Muslim marriages as valid.

"This judgment, and the order made, is of great significance for women, current and future, who have, and will choose to, enter into a Muslim marriage," the non-profit law centre said in a statement.

Judges Siraj Desai, Gayaat Salie-Hlophe and Nolwazi Boqwana handed down the judgment on Friday.

The court declared that the president and Cabinet had failed to fulfil their constitutional obligations and that such conduct was invalid.

The application for the recognition of Muslim marriages was brought by the Women's Legal Centre, which said it was aimed at providing Muslim women and their children with legal protection upon divorce.

The court declared that, should legislation not be enacted within the next two years (24 months), a union that was validly concluded as a marriage in terms of Sharia law and which subsisted at the time that the order became operative, may be dissolved in accordance with the Divorce Act and all provisions of that act would be applicable.

"The court referenced a number of Constitutional Court judgments in confirming that 'women continue to occupy a vulnerable position in our society in relation to familial structures', and accepted the comparison made by the WLC between the recognition and protection afforded to women in Muslim marriages, and the recognition and protection of partners in civil or customary marriages," the WLC said.

The law centre added that it hoped to see the fruits of the judgment in the coming months, and that the state would introduce legislation without delay.

Source: News24

See What Everyone is Watching

More From: News24Wire

Don't Miss

AllAfrica publishes around 600 reports a day from more than 150 news organizations and over 500 other institutions and individuals, representing a diversity of positions on every topic. We publish news and views ranging from vigorous opponents of governments to government publications and spokespersons. Publishers named above each report are responsible for their own content, which AllAfrica does not have the legal right to edit or correct.

Articles and commentaries that identify allAfrica.com as the publisher are produced or commissioned by AllAfrica. To address comments or complaints, please Contact us.