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Forum puts spotlight on rights of divorced women

A forum yesterday highlighted the importance of nafkah, financial support under the direction of the court, for divorced women from their former husbands.

President of the Women Graduation Association of Brunei Darussalam (PSW) Hajah Hassanah binti Haji Hassan said that once divorced, women and their children may often face financial difficulties.

The PSW said the forum hoped to empower women with knowledge on how to obtain financial support owed to them under the Islamic law, while helping understand the responsibilities men have to their families.

Syariah High Court Judge Haji Hassan bin Haji Metali during the forum on ‘Wife and Children Nafkah in Islamic Family Law in Brunei Darussalam’ shared that women may ask the court to order the husband to provide nafkah, also known as alimony, which would be deducted from the husband’s salary.

The Syariah judge believed that divorce numbers for a small nation such as Brunei is quite high, with some 1,162 cases between 2020 and 2021. Common causes of divorce include lack of understanding between the couple, abuse, wanting to re-marry and in some instances, black magic, he said.

The forum, organised by the PSW, also discussed Islamic family law and the provisions it has for protecting women and children as well as the rights of married men.

The forum hoped to provide an insight on Islamic family law and how the implementation of Islamic values can promote justice and family well-being in the country.

Minister of Culture, Youth and Sports Dato Seri Setia Awang Haji Nazmi bin Haji Mohamad was the guest of honour. – Azlan Othman

Syariah High Court Judge Haji Hassan bin Haji Metali at the forum. PHOTO: AZLAN OTHMAN