DRC: A Law to Regulate the Dowry and Engagement Examined by the National Assembly

maryam lahbal
maryam lahbal
2 Min Read

This is an important social debate in cities like Kinshasa where people marry less and later, for lack of money. In the DRC, the National Assembly wants to legislate the issue of dowry and engagement. A law carried by a deputy of the majority was deemed admissible by the National Assembly, the first step before its adoption and promulgation.

It is to combat abuse that the majority deputy Daniel Mbau proposes this law, he says. If it is adopted, the couples will be able to see their engagement dissolved if, twelve months after being engaged, the future spouses do not marry.

In society, a concerning phenomenon known as “chatter” has been observed, where young individuals approach and court others, only to vanish and marry someone else later on. This practice, prevalent among young boys and girls as young as 3 to 15 years old, has raised alarm bells and prompted a call for action. One deputy, recognizing the need to address this issue, aims to combat not only the evasive behavior but also the prevalent abuses in dowry payments.

Under the proposed law, it will be prohibited for families to include additional items or objects in the dowry beyond what is customary. This means that extravagant requests such as the latest iPhone Pro Max, computers, motorcycles, plasma televisions, and the like will be strictly forbidden. The deputy firmly believes that such provisions are necessary to safeguard against excessive dowry demands and bring about fairness in the process.

Maryam Lahbal

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