Man, 99, weds 40-year-old lover after dating for 20 years


It is not every day you see a nonagenarian walk down the aisle. So when 99-year-old Kenyan, Johana Butuk, decided to take a wife for the first time, it made headlines.

Over the weekend, Mr Butuk married his girlfriend, Alice Jemeli, 40, after 20 years of dating.

The lovebirds tied the knot in a colourful wedding ceremony.

Kenyan newspaper, ‘The Standard‘, reports that when they first met in 2003, Jemeli (bride) was only 20 years old while Butuk (groom) was 69. Despite their age differences, their love blossomed as they dated.

The nonagenarian proposed to Jemeli in December 2022.

According to reports, it is Mr Butuk’s first marriage since he has never dated a woman in the 99 years he has lived.

His bride, however, has three children from a previous relationship and is happy Mr Butuk has accepted them.

Getting married at 99

Mr Butuk said there are valid reasons why he stayed single for the 99 years he has lived on earth.

In an interview, he explained that he did not marry his entire life because he always wanted peace of mind.

“I was also busy with menial jobs, and when I decided to marry, all my friends were already grandfathers. But when I met my wife, I discovered that I had found what I wanted in life.

“Alice talks less and helps navigate challenges in life. I have been late in many things, but today I am happy because I am a married man. I am confident that the happiness in my marriage will make me live longer,” he said.

Although she was young when they first met, he said he loved her because of her humility.

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“I was first introduced to her by a female friend, and we connected well despite the age differences. I am happy because my wife is now mature and responsible,” he added.

Love at first sight

The story is not different for his bride as she said she loved Mr Butuk from the moment she set her eyes on him.

“I loved him when we first met in 2003. I had quit an abusive relationship, but when I met him through a woman, I loved him because he was humble and listened to me.

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“He was old, and I decided to be his helper because I would become a married woman like other women,” Jemeli said.

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