Mugabe got robe from Kenyan 'fraudster'

2012-03-30 15:59

Special Report

WATCH: Would YOU put your hand into a swimming pool to fish out a snake? Zimbabwe 'snakeman' is a hit
WATCH: Would YOU put your hand into a swimming pool to fish out a snake? Zimbabwe 'snakeman' is a hit

They're calling him Zimbabwe's Steve Irwin - and his fans on social media just can't get enough of him. Passionate about wildlife since he was a boy, Chawatama Marimo, 43, is frequently called upon to capture "problem" snakes in and around Harare.

Cape Town - Kenyan businessman Paul Kamlesh Pattni, who gave Zimbabwean President Robert Mugabe a royal robe which reportedly once belonged to slain Libyan leader Muammar Gaddafi, is linked to an $850m fraud case that almost ground the East African nation to a halt in the 1990s, Kenyan Embassy sources have disclosed, according to Daily News.

The money equivalent to 5% of Kenya’s gross domestic product at the time was looted from the Central Bank of Kenya (CBK), in what became known as the Goldenberg Scandal during former president Daniel arap Mois tenure.

According to the report, Pattni is now facing a litany of charges and of exploiting a scheme designed to revitalise Kenya's faltering economy in the 1990s. The matter will go to trial on April 16.

Head of chancery at the Kenyan embassy in Harare, Peter Nairimo, said the embassy was not aware of Pattni's private visit to Zimbabwe early this month.

"We saw in the newspapers that he [Pattni] came here. He didn't come to the embassy. We were not notified of his visit and we didn't know he came here, but let me investigate what you say. I will call you," Nairimo said.

But other embassy officials who declined to be named for fear of reprisal, claimed Pattni, a Kenyan-Indian businessman, had several corruption charges hanging over his head. The officials disputed Pattni's claims he represented Kenya’s traditional leaders.

Zimbabwe's president of the Chiefs Council Fortune Charumbira, however, defended Pattni insisting he had visited in his official capacity as a representative of Kenya's traditional chiefs.

"It is not the first time Pattni has come to Zimbabwe as he was here before. We are not legally allowed to comment on what you are saying about him [the alleged criminal record], I don't have that information.

"And that is politics now, all we know is that he came here as the representative of the Kenyan Chiefs Council."

Pattni was introduced to Mugabe at the chiefs annual conference in Bulawayo as national chairperson of the House of Traditional Elders in Kenya. Immediately afterwards, Pattni presented the gown, hugged and anointed Mugabe Chief of Africa after Gaddafi.

I got the gown from Gaddafi before he died. So after his death Mugabe is the only African leader who deserves to have it. As elders of Africa, we are now looking upon Mugabe to lead us, said Pattni in an interview after presenting the gown.

Read more on:    robert mugabe  |  muammar gaddafi  |  kenya  |  zimbabwe  |  libya  |  southern africa

Join the conversation!

24.com encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions.


24.com publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire 24.com network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.