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Tycoon’s “widow” vehemently denies that broke ex-spouse was once her husband

A woman, Norah Atieno, is currently embroiled in a hotly contested case where she is fighting to be recognised as one of the widows of multimillionaire businessman, Washington Olweny, owner of Evans Sunrise Hospital who died in 2016 without leaving behind a will.

Justice Teresia Matheka agreed to admit as evidence some of the documentation and testimonies that Norah offered as proof that she was a wife to the late Olweny.
Norah provided photos of her, Olweny and children who she claimed were theirs as evidence of their having been a couple.

She also refuted claims that she was already married to someone else so couldn’t possibly have been Olweny’s wife.

During cross-examination, Atieno denied having been married to one George Odhiambo, the father of three of her children. They had been together for 11 years. She informed the court that Odhiambo failed to pay her bride price as required by the Luo culture, thus they were just cohabiting.

“Once Olweny paid the dowry in 1993, we were officially married and he took over the children as his own. He had all the rights,” she said.

Atieno, a former clerk at the Kenya Breweries, said they met at a function in 1990. By then, Olweny was the chairman of a political party.

She said her father could not have accepted bride price from Olweny if she was married to another person.

“The culture couldn’t have allowed it.”

In Olweny’s eulogy, Atieno was listed as Olweny’s second wife. Akoth and Wanjiru were named as the first and third wife respectively.

Atieno said she entered into a customary marriage with Olweny on February 3, 1993.

“I went to Olweny’s house in 1992 with three children who were minors by then. I later got two children with the deceased,” she testified.

She also said she lived together with Akoth as co-wives for over six years.

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    Written by Joshua Wanga

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