A Kenyan man seeking compensation from a condoms manufacturer after allegedly contracting a sexually transmitted infection (STI) despite using one of its brands as protection has been left pants down after the court dismissed his petition for lack of evidence.
Justice Lawrence Mugambi said Williamson Nyakweba who filed the suit in 2018 did not prove that he purchased condoms manufactured by Beta International.
“The claim that the petitioner’s consumer rights were violated is thus clearly indefensible as the petitioner could neither prove purchase of the said condom nor the fact that he used it let alone the same being sub-standard,” Justice Mugambi asserted in a ruling last week.
Nyakweba had sued Beta Healthcare, Kenya Bureau of Standards and Kenya Revenue Authority over a ‘faulty’ condom that saw him infect his wife with a sexually transmitted disease that ruined their marriage.
In his plaint, the man said he bought a packet of Zoom, scented “Chocolate flavoured” studded condoms, which he believed would please a woman he planned to have sex with and protect him fully.
However, he said the condom broke during intercourse, a fact he only realised after the act but which he dismissed as a non-issue. Three days later, he had unprotected sex with his wife and several days later discovered later learned he had infected her with an STI.
Mr Nyakweba had sought a Ksh500,000 award for this, but Justice Mugambi termed the suit as unmerited and as such a claim on violation of rights under Article 43 (1) of the Constitution was unsustainable.
The court noted that the Kenya Bureau of Standards proved that a batch of sub-standard condoms rejected in Uganda did not find their way to Kenya since proof of destruction as ordered by authorities in Uganda had been produced.
Mr Mugambi also questioned the credibility of the petitioner having admitted to have been unfaithful to his wife. “Can he be trusted without any other independent corroborative evidence? This is a man who admits that he is married. That notwithstanding, he says he cheated on his wife with several women (not one), in different towns in various counties,” the judge noted.
“This is a man whose quality of honesty is already shaky. He was unfaithful to his own spouse. Can any court rely on the sole evidence of such character without corroboration?” Mugambi posed.
The court further noted the petitioner failed to present the woman he allegedly had an affair with to give her account of events. “There was no corroboration as the woman he had slept with when the condom allegedly burst did not testify,” he said.
Mr Williamson Nyakweba had claimed that the said substandard condoms were irregularly distributed in the Kenya market and that he used the defective brand.
Mr Nyakweba had claimed that the said substandard condoms were irregularly distributed in the Kenya market and that he used the defective brand. He told the court that upon contracting an STI in an extramarital affair, his marriage was irreparably damaged.
Mr Nyakweba told the court he used the Beta condoms on October 4, 2014 after attending a friend’s wedding and learnt that he had difficulties passing urine a week later. “On the dance floor, he got acquainted to a lady with whom he later got intimate that night. He used his favourite Zoom scented chocolate flavoured studded condom’ for protection and pleasure,” court documents showed.
Mr Nyakweba reportedly fell ill on October 15, 2014 after unsuccessful attempt to self-medicate using traditional medicine. He subsequently visited a clinic where he was diagnosed with an STI and put on treatment. Mr Nyakweba told the court that the breakdown of his marriage plunged him into depression and that he lost his job after becoming an alcoholic.
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