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GoZ Inconsistent on Lobola Payment

The new Act has provoked debate about the place of lobola in legally recognized relationships

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GoZ Inconsistent on Lobola Payment

Justice, Legal, and Parliamentary Affairs Minister Ziyambi Ziyambi cleared up some misunderstandings regarding the new Marriages Act in a recent statement, reiterating that paying the lobola is still a requirement in order to register a customary marriage.

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The Act, which combined the laws pertaining to civil and traditional marriages, has provoked debate about the place of lobola in legally recognized relationships.

Minister Ziyambi made it clear that, despite certain claims to the contrary, lobola is still a necessary component for registering traditional unions even though it is not required for formal marriages.

He emphasized the contrast, saying that while lobola is no longer required for registration in civil marriages, the new legislation preserves its requirement in traditional marriages.

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Minister Ziyambi underscored the Act’s comprehensive nature, explaining its repeal of previous marriage laws, including the Civil Marriages Act and the Customary Marriages Act.

GoZ Inconsistent on Lobola Payment

He emphasized that while the Civil Marriages Act historically didn’t hinge on lobola payment for registration, the same does not hold true for customary unions under the new legislation.

In essence, the requirement of lobola payment endures for customary marriages, with marriage officers, now inclusive of traditional leaders, mandated to ascertain lobola payment before registering such unions.

Minister Ziyambi concluded that it’s erroneous to assume that lobola has become optional under the new law, clarifying its continued significance in the context of customary marriages.


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