Deputy Speaker Oulanyah’s two-year marriage on the verge of collapse

Tuesday September 29 2015

Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah

Deputy Speaker of Parliament Jacob Oulanyah tied the knot with Ladywinnie Amoo Okot at Munyonyo in January 2013. The archbishop of the Church of Uganda, the Rt. Rev. Stanley Ntagali (C) was the main celebrant. File Photo  

By Yasiin Mugerwa

Parliament-

After two years and nine months of marriage, Deputy Speaker Jacob Oulanyah has filed for divorce, accusing his wife, Lady Winnie Amoo Oulanyah, with whom they have two children of “causing him emotional stress” and “denying him conjugal rights”.

At the beginning of June, a close family friend, who requested not to be named told Daily Monitor that the wife received some information that Mr Oulanyah had a “girlfriend” in town. Mr Oulanyah however, denied everything, but she still refused to believe him. From then on, a source said, their marriage started showing signs of crumbling but the couple kept going on amid challenges.

Apparently, “the lady” as she is commonly known at home, did not want to stay in Uganda even after Mr Oulanyah promised to get her a job in Kampala. She also made it clear to Mr Oulanyah that she could not leave her job in California, where she is a citizen. This riled Mr Oulanyah, who had previously complained about the dilemma of running two homes.

Court documents Daily Monitor has seen indicate that Mr Oulanyah filed for divorce in the High Court of Uganda at Kampala (Family Division) August 22 July through M/s Lex Uganda Advocates and Solicitors. In the affidavit, Mr Oulanyah claims his wife mistreats his three children from the first marriage. He complained that his wife leaves his children to cook for themselves and that she had denied him conjugal rights since February 2015.

Mr Oulanyah’s first wife, Ms Dorothy Nangwale Oulanyah, a distinguished child rights activist died in August 2009. She died of cardiac arrest at Mulago Hospital and survived with three children.

Four years later, Mr Oulanyah decided to re-marry on the same day his former father-in- law, the late Hon Abner Nangwale was buried. Eng. Nangwale was a congressman and a minister in the late Milton Obote II government.

On August 14, the court served his mother-in-law, Ms Santa Okot with summons to file her defence within 15 days although she has since advised Mr Oulanyah’s lawyers to send their summons to America where her daughter lives. Ms Okot on August 28 complained that the summons was given to the “wrong address and wrong person.”

“Lady Winnie Amoo Oulanyah is my daughter but I am not Lady Winnie Amoo Oulanyah as the letter (summons) was addressed. I am Okot Santa,” the Mother to Oulanyah’s wife wrote. “I have no answer to give since I was not the one who got married to the petitioner.”

Although Mr Oulanyah’s marriage is on the verge of collapse, speaking at the wedding ceremony at Speke Hotel in Munyonyo, DP President Norbert Mao had warned the couple, saying, “By the time a marriage is two weeks old, there are grounds for divorce.”

Although Mr Oulanyah accuses the wife of mistreating his children, President Museveni, who attended the church service for the wedding had advised the wife to love Oualnyah’s children, not to divide them.

Archbishop Stanley Ntagali, who wedded the couple also warned: "Marriage is a hallowed institution and it should not be undertaken carelessly, lightly, or selfishly, but reverently and after serious thought” and asked them to always cherish sincere love, patience and always be forgiving towards each other in order to enjoy a peaceful and lasting marriage, inevitable earthly challenges notwithstanding.

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