(Un)married happily ever after

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iol nws aug 4 home affairs

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The irate businessman said he had tried repeatedly to have his marital status altered at Home Affairs after his first marriage was dissolved in the Joburg High Court in 2008. Picture: Timothy Bernard

Pretoria - What was meant to be a blissful marriage has turned into non-stop frustration for a man who can’t get Home Affairs to change his marital status.

In a desperate plea to undo the mess he claims the Department of Home Affairs has made, Charl Lensley, 33, of Boksburg this week wrote a lengthy e-mail to the Presidency, to top management of Home Affairs, and to various media outlets.

The e-mail to Home Affairs Minister Nkosazana Dlamini Zuma’s personal assistant, Thembakazi Balfour, describes Lensley’s problem.

The irate businessman said he had tried repeatedly to have his marital status altered at Home Affairs after his first marriage was dissolved in the Joburg High Court in 2008. He re-married in September.

But Lensley said he was shocked to discover shortly after that that he was still officially married to his former wife.

“My marriage officer drove about 100km to and from Home Affairs but in the end could not register us.”

Lensley said that when he queried it at his local Home Affairs office in Boksburg, he was told to apply for a new identity document, at a cost of R140.

But his new ID did not alter his marital status. And it registered him at his old residential address.

“It’s almost a year now and I still can’t register my marriage. My wife and I can’t apply for anything as husband and wife because, according to Home Affairs, I’m still married to my first wife.”

Home Affairs had not commented at the time of going to print. - Pretoria News Weekend


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