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Husband, 26, Seeks to Divorce Bride, 85, after 4 Weeks

April 7, 1987

JOHANNESBURG, South Africa (AP) _ A 26-year-old man has filed to divorce his 85-year-old wife after four weeks of marriage, complaining that she stopped washing floors and cooking for him, a newspaper reported.

Beeld, a Johannesburg daily, also said Lucas Botha discovered that he was the woman’s fifth husband, not her second, as he had believed. It said she once woke him in the middle of the night accusing him of lacking vigor.

The newspaper said Monday that the Belfast-born Annie Best Botha cried when interviewed about the break-up. ″Our marriage never stood a chance because we were never alone,″ she said. ″I still love him.″

The couple lived with the husband’s parents in Pretoria.

″He asked me if I would always stand by his side when he had an epileptic fit. I said I always would,″ Mrs. Botha said.

She said she planned to return to Durban, where she met Botha in January while he was on vacation in the Indian Ocean port.

Botha was born in 1960, 11 years after his bride retired as a nurse in Durban. She said when they were married that her husband of 50 years died 10 years ago.

″He’s the image of my late hubby - that’s why I was attracted to him,″ she said then.

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