PRETORIA– The South African Department of Home Affairs (Interior) says it is studying the judgment of the High Court in Cape Town to recognize Muslim marriages and to give the State 24 months to introduce legislation recognizing such marriages.
The application leading to the court’s decision was was lodged by the Women’s Legal Centre in 2014, arguing that in Muslim marriages, women and children have no legal protection following divorce or death.
A Home Affairs Department spokesperson said Monday: “We have noted a judgment by the Western Cape High Court that ordered the State to introduce legislation to recognize Muslim marriages. We also note that the decision is subject to confirmation by the Constitutional Court.”
The Muslim Judicial Council has described the ruling as a milestone, with its second deputy president, Shayk Riad Fataar, saying: “Something we’ve been waiting for, for a long. It’s an opportunity for President Cyril Ramaphosa to leave his mark in history and recognize the Muslin community in their marriages.”
However, South African Muslims will have two years to wait for the drafting of the relevant legislation, and even longer if there is an appeal against the High Court’s ruling.
Source: NAM NEWS NETWORK