In The Case of Elizabeth Nalumansi Wamala V Jolly Kasande and Three Others Before the Supreme Court of Uganda.
CORAM: KATUREEBE, C.J, ARACH- AMOKO, MWANGUSYA, BUTEERA, JJSC, NSIIMYE, Ag JSC
The applicant Elizabeth Nalumansi Wamala was married to the deceased in 1993 in the United Kingdom, but the deceased was deported from the United Kingdom and he returned to Uganda and the applicant stayed working as a nurse. They have one child. However, they both got involved with other partners and had children with them.
In 2008 the deceased approached the applicant, they reconciled and in December of 2010 they renewed their marriage vows at Namirembe Cathedral. The learned justice established that the applicant and the deceased were legally married and they hadn’t annulled their marriage.
However, the question before the court was whether the applicant having stayed away from the deceased for a long time could benefit from the deceased’s estate since he had died intestate and he was living with another woman who he had children with.
Section 30 of the succession bill provides for separation of husband and wife: no wife or husband of an intestate shall take any interest in the estate of an intestate if at the time of death of the intestate he or she was separated from the deceased as a member of the same household.
The justice of the supreme court saw it fit that since the supreme court is a court of unlimited power to ensure that justice and logic work together. The justice of the supreme court saw it to be just and fair for the applicant to be added as a beneficiary in the estate of the deceased as they were legally married as stipulated by Article 31 of the Constitution and the Marriage Act. This judgment was given on the 17th day of January of 2019.