THE Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission has been urged to move in and arrest Zimbabwe ambassador to the United Kingdom, Colonel Christian Katsande (Rtd) for alleged criminal abuse of office, Zim Morning Post can report.
This follows a raft of allegations against Katsande which include accusations of inflating renovations at the Zimbabwe government-owned UK residence by about US$1 million.
The retired senior Zimbabwe National Army official is also accused of paying his brother, Nzwanayi Katsande (a driver), US$6 800 in salaries and allowances, far above what senior embassy employees are earning.
Highly placed sources who spoke to Zim Morning Post alleged that the Zimbabwean embassy in London has virtually become “a Katsande fiefdom.”
During the period 2014 to 2018, there was no appointed Zimbabwean Ambassador. A caretaker family was recruited to take care of the Zimbabwe Residence.
So, when Katsande was posted to the UK as ambassador in 2018, he found a caretaker family at the Zimbabwe House (now said to be undergoing renovations).
This publication understands that upon arrival in London, Katsande immediately booted out the caretaker family and reportedly replaced it with members of his family.
Zim Morning Post also has it on good grounds that Katsande’s arrival in UK coincided with the unceremonious firing from work of an embassy chauffeur of 30 years, only to be replaced by the ambassador’s brother, Nzwanayi.
This publication also understands that concerning the recruitment of staff at the embassy, there are diplomats who are posted from Zimbabwe.
In addition, it is also said there are other people (even non-Zimbabweans) who are recruited in the UK to work for the embassy.
These are normally referred to as locally recruited staff.
“Katsande virtually filled all these posts with his relatives,” said a source who is very close to the Zimbabwe-UK embassy.
“So, basically, the Zimbabwean embassy in London is virtually a Katsande fiefdom,” added the Zim Morning Post source.
“I am now only saying this because the issue is already out. But there is very serious abuse of office there,” he continued.
Katsande has declined to comment on the allegations with questions sent to him going unanswered.