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Entertainment & The Law: Cheating is not a crime

by Editorial Team
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By Charity M. Ngabirano

In a video that went viral on Wednesday, Casmir Mukisa Kimenyi aka MC Casmir appears broken and confused as he continuously apologises to who we suppose is the husband of the woman he was caught with.

One would think that after such a shameful incident, the TV presenter would coil up at home, tail between legs and regret ever asking for this lady’s phone number. But not him. He has vowed to seek justice for the humiliation they caused him, especially the people who showed up at his place to arrest him, thus causing a scene, and the one who recorded the video.

Therefore, the million dollar question here is; is cheating a criminal offence?

Adultery used to be a criminal offence in Uganda until 2007 when it was scrapped following a landmark court decision that found the law on adultery discriminative against women and inconsistent with the Constitution.

Section 154 of the Penal Code then stated that it was an offence for a married woman to have sex with another man, married or unmarried. However, it did not show anywhere that it was a crime for a married man to have sex with another woman.

An aggrieved husband would be compensated, but a woman whose husband cheated got nothing.

The Constitution stands for equality before the law. Therefore this law on adultery was on the off side.

In that regard, therefore, adultery in Uganda is no longer a criminal offence that requires the involvement of the Police. One can mainly use it as grounds for divorce.

What remedy is available for MC Casmir?

Article 27 of the Constitution protects our right to privacy, saying, “No person shall be subjected to unlawful entry by others of the premises of that person. No person shall be subjected to interference with the privacy of that person’s home…or other property.”

Article 50 provides for a solution if that fundamental right has been infringed or threatened. It says, “Any person who claims that a fundamental …right under this Constitution has been infringed…, is entitled to apply to a competent court for redress which may include compensation.”

Privacy is a fundamental human right recognised both locally and internationally. It also underpins human dignity and other values such as freedom of association.

Cultural and religious institutions cannot punish someone if the law says that cheating is not a criminal offence.

According to Article 2, the Constitution is the supreme law of Uganda and if any other law or any custom is inconsistent with any of the provisions of this Constitution, the Constitution shall prevail.

The non-consensual sharing of the said video, as well as the chaos caused at MC Casmir’s house was a humiliating incident that has no doubt damaged his reputation. He can, therefore, sue for damages. Let him make some ka money out of the woman’s husband (if it was him who recorded the video) and the other intruders.

The writer is an advocate

Note: The article is intended to provide information about general statements of law and is not intended to create an advocate-client relationship. Contact a lawyer on specific legal problems

 

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