Drama and intrigue: Inside Eunice Njeri’s 24-hour marriage
It is a story full of drama and intrigue, a rollercoaster that has puzzled both fans and friends. The Izzo and Eunice love affair was, until a few months ago, a discreet matter. Then sketchy details of their engagement emerged late last year.
This week, however, gospel songbird Eunice Njeri shocked many when she took to her Facebook and Instagram accounts to talk about her marriage to gospel musician Izzo (Isaac Bukasa), which was annulled less that 24 hours after she walked down the aisle.
She wrote: “On the 27th Nov 2016, Isaac and I did go to the altar to get married. But at the end of that day, I realised one thing: I couldn’t do it, my heart was somewhere else. Probably in Africa doing what I do best; I’m still trying to figure that out. I immediately left for Kenya and have been serving God the best way I know how. To all who supported Isaac and I, I’m grateful. May God bless you immensely. To all who were hurt in the process, I apologise. The marriage was annulled (like it never happened). No papers were signed. Afterwards, we both made a decision to go our separate ways. I hope for your support and help as we move on. Like every other relationship, we hit a rock. Maybe a little too early but we have since overcome it. Consequently, we have decided to go our separate ways and hope for the very best. God bless you.”
Eunice Njeri’s 24-hour annulment beat Britney Spears’ 55-hour marriage. Spears set the record for the shortest showbiz wedding when she annulled her marriage to Jason Alexander in 2004. Actress Carmen Electra and basketball legend Dennis Rodman got married in Vegas, only for Rodman to file for annulment nine days later.
STARTS AND STOPS
Comedian Eddie Murphy and Tracey Edmonds had a non-binding ceremony on New Year’s Day, 2008, and vowed they would have a big, splashy wedding. But they broke up 14 days later. Reality TV queen Kim Kardashian married NBA star Kris Humphries but they called it quits just 72 days later.
Annulment is a way of ending a marriage, like divorce. Unlike divorce which you have to wait at least a year, you can get a marriage annulled at any time after the wedding.
Back to Njeri and Bukasa. The songbird took many by surprise when she announced her engagement to Bukasa in September, 2016. A close friend says: “We did not even know they were dating when we heard they were engaged. We learnt about it vaguely, like everybody else.”
Buzz has since learnt that everything about the union was shaky, even days to the wedding. A source who lives in the US and was privy to the happenings says that about one week to the wedding, the couple was introduced to Neema Gospel Church in Dallas, Texas.
Bukasa is a member of the church. But for Njeri, according to the source, it was her first time in the church.
“It was Njeri’s first time to visit the church. She was accompanied by a woman who introduced herself as a pastor, mother, police officer and a good friend of Njeri for many years, who had come for moral support,” recalls the source. “Njeri didn’t say a word, she just smiled.”
After the introduction, the pastor, known as King’ori, requested female members of the congregation to stay behind after the service to help arrange “Kugira muhiki” (To pick the bride) on the day of the wedding. Our source does not explain if there had been dowry negotiations and other customary proceedings before the wedding, but says there was a fund-raiser for the event.
“Njeri and Bukasa had a pre-wedding fund-raiser, which the church contributed well to and supported.”
Everything was set and was going according to plan until a text message was sent to church members two days before — on Thanksgiving Day — informing them that the wedding had been postponed.
“This is to notify everyone that Eunice Njeri and Isaac’s wedding, scheduled for this Saturday November 26th, has been postponed indefinitely until further notice. Please be advised that there will be no wedding at Neema Gospel Church this Saturday. Eunice and Isaac wishes (sic) to apologise for all the inconvenience caused to the guests.”
The wedding didn’t take place that day, but to everyone’s surprise, it apparently happened the next day, Sunday 27, after church service. However, another church member says: “She (Njeri) did not seem happy.”
Our source cannot understand why they would decide to get married on a Sunday with much fewer guests. Many people felt that something was wrong, but they couldn’t say what, exactly.
By not giving more details, Njeri has given room to speculation. Many are latching on the: “My heart was somewhere else, probably in Africa” part of the statement, and are wondering if there was another man in the picture.
On Friday, Bukasa’s sister Lize Bukasa posted a video on Facebook to prove that Njeri did actually sign papers.
She wrote; “I love my brother so much and have been debating on whether or not to post this. Papers were indeed signed. It’s been said that papers were never signed, here is a prove to it… everything happens for a reason. As the sister I’m reacting towards all what’s going around.”
Njeri quickly replied and deleted saying; “In Texas the final certificate is signed in court. What you see here is the signing of a marriage licence by the witnesses and pastor. The certificate expires after 30 days if not resubmitted to the court. To avoid the process of divorce I chose to let it expire… If you check this video well, you will notice that the paper I sign is empty and this was a formality for the photos… pastor King’ori graciously showed us the process I’m the one who chose not through to the end…”
Whatever the reason, Njeri has come under attack from many fans who believe she “sinned”. However, going through her social media pages, many others are comforting her and daring those “without sin to cast the first stone.”
Many people believe it took a lot of strength to come out publicly and talk about her marriage. But Njeri also gave fodder to Internet blogs and gossip pages by leaving the issue only partially solved.