A former British police officer has finally surrendered his three-year-old boy to his estranged Kenyan girlfriend after months of a protracted child custody battle.
This comes a week after the Family Division Court in Mombasa ordered that the minor stays with his mother.
The retired senior Scotland Yard officer, together with his advocate Lawrence Obonyo, Wednesday morning handed over the child to the woman following a court ruling in her favour.
Justice John Onyiego overturned a children’s court decision that had given the Briton the boy’s custody. In a ruling delivered last week, the court ordered the foreigner to return the minor to his mother. He will, however, have unregulated access to him.
The court has also ordered a report from the children’s officer on the suitability of the mother to stay with the minor. This is after the Briton complained that the woman is mentally unfit to take care of the boy.
“The applicant, DW, to hand over the child to the respondent XY. The respondent to deposit in court her passport and that of the child,” said the judge.
The once happy love birds have since turned against each other due to the child custody dispute.
While the man wants to register the boy as a British citizen, and secure him an Irish European Union passport, the woman is opposed to this arrangement, claiming the foreigner plans to escape with him.
Her opposition to the man's custody of the child, stems from allegations that the Briton had at one point advised her to abort the pregnancy, immediately after she conceived.
She argued that the man is in his old age and therefore unable to properly take care of the minor.
However, the Briton argued that as a general rule, it is necessary for a child of the tender age of three years to be under the custody of the mother, unless there are exceptional circumstances to justify custody orders to the father.
The Briton alleged that the child’s health is at risk when he is left in the custody of the woman, whom he alleges to be insane.
He has claimed that the woman cannot be left to care for the child since she has cleared his bank account.
The woman, through her lawyer Alex Masika, however, rubbished the allegations, noting that no evidence has been availed to prove she has mental issues.
“The appellant (woman) has not been examined by a psychiatrist to give credence to claims that she is mentally incapacitated. She is a mother and the child is of a tender age, hence she should be given custody,” said the advocate.
She argued that the court deprived her custody of her son despite the fact that he is still breastfeeding. She has also expressed fears that something worse may happen to the child while in the custody of the man, having advised her to abort when she conceived.
“The minor is at risk of being removed from the custody of his biological mother because the foreigner is demanding to get his documents,” lamented the woman.
The foreigner noted the woman’s efforts to deny him access to the child is premised on misrepresentation, and deliberate concealment of material facts, with the sole aim of misleading the court to arrive at an unjust decision.
“She is being economical with the truth. Her arguments are just among the schemes that have been made to frustrate my attempts to have access to my son,” said the foreigner, who is also former Police and Crime Commissioner for the County of Surrey in the UK.
The foreigner has urged the court not to give in, to what he terms the woman’s elaborate schemes to further frustrate him, as she has all along done during the pendency of the case.
He has indicated that he is interested in protecting the boy’s interest.
The foreigner has claimed that he discovered that the woman has been trying to sell the family home worth over Sh11 million, which he claims to have solely purchased for his son, but registered in the woman’s name.
According to his affidavit, the woman had planned to sell the house and then move with the child outside the country, where he would not be able to see him again.