Axiom news – victory for client in funeral dispute
We recently represented for members of a family fighting for the right of their Tanzanian-born mother to have her funeral here.
In a highly-unusual case, the children of Sally Salome Fidelis, who lived in Britain for 27 years and died in June, had fought over where she should be buried.
One son Frank Wilson Mkini and his sisters Flora Wilson Mkini and Jacqueline Esther Mkini wanted their mother buried in Milton Keynes where there were strong family links.
Taffi Nyawanza, represented them as they brought an urgent injunction application against their brother David Wilson who had attempted to have his mother’s body flown to Tanzania.
The family dispute arose from the fact that Mrs Mkini, who moved to Britain in 1993, died without having made a will.
In evidence, Frank Mkini said that, despite this, his mother had made her intentions clear in a recorded declaration that she wanted to be buried in this country – her home for so long.
Meanwhile, Wilson Andrew Mkini, who was father to all the children, was living in Tanzania and had never visited the family in Britain.
The court heard that their brother David Wilson had acted in collusion with his father, and against his mother’s clear wishes, to repatriate her body to Tanzania where the funeral would take place.
To further this, it was claimed, he stole her passport, forged official documents and booked a transfer of the body on a flight from Heathrow to Dar Es Salaam.
The court found in favour of the claimants and Mrs Mkini’s British funeral went ahead.
After the hearing, solicitor Taffi Nyawanza said: “It was a great outcome to a complex case. Mrs Mkini’s family, her children and grandchildren now have the chance to say a proper farewell to her. It is a great relief to them.”
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