Tigist and her husband Tarike live in the area in the Southern Regional State. She was engaged in a small informal business as food vendor while her husband, Tarike worked as daily labor. Over time, their live improved that they built their own house and owned assets.
However, as soon as their asset increased, Tarike tried to marry another woman and thought of bringing her into the home he and Tigist are living in. Tigist objected and reported the case to the police. Police sent her to the prosecution office which, however, referred the case to elders for arbitration because the man denied any marriage ties with Tigist. Arbitrators drafted an agreement to the effect that Tigist and the man will share all the property in the house.
This was not in keeping with Tigist’s interests because most of the household items belonged to her personally. When arbitrators refused to listen to her, she took the case to the kebele level anti-VAW Women Watch Groups. The watch group intervened and mediated another agreement between Tigist and Tarike with the help of police who they have allied with to challenge the practice in the community.
Hence, Tigist is now appeased because their marriage contract is now put in writing and a clear list of the common items as well as items belonging to her are identified in the contract. Accordingly, Tarike abandoned the idea of a second marriage and continued to live with Tigist. Tigist continued to suspect that this would not last; but at least she feels she is in a better position now that even if things get worse and their marriage has to dissolve.