Over 50 couples in Jabana Sector, Gasabo district, who have been living together for some years on Christmas eve tied the knot in a mass civil marriage held at the sector grounds.
The couples were part of the campaign organised by the sector authorities to formalise illegal marriages inline with the government plan to build stronger family institutions.
The couples made their vows before the State Civil officer of Jabana sector and were were awarded civil marriage certificates.
In an interview with The New Times, the State Civil Officer Kimenyi Bulakali said that the campaign targets couples that have been living together and targeted festive holidays when most couples are not busy.
“Basically we are targeting 100 couples to tie the knot. We encourage them to do so voluntarily as part of the government plan to build stronger families recognised by legal entities,” Bulakali.
He told the couples that the certificates attained will not only legalise their marriages but also entitle them to a variety of services offered to legally married people.
The government official noted high separation rates among co-habiting partners and high prevalence rates of adultery.
The move is also aimed at preventing relationships out of wedlock and the spread of HIV/AIDS among married couples.