Actress Tinopona Katsande’s partner, Chigariro has spoken out after their relationship fell apart.
“I never paid any lobola or even tsvakirai kuno for Tin Tin and when some of my relatives saw the story about our marriage in the newspapers they were shocked. My dad called asking me when I had gotten married, my grandfather also called and congratulated me but told me that was not how things were done in our culture,” Chigariro told The Sunday Mail in an interview.
“When I first met Tin Tin she was like an outcast in her family so I didn’t even get to meet any of her relatives besides Tonderai Katsande. We met during Zim Fashion Week 2014 and
she told me she was going through a hard time at a friend’s house in Eastlea where she stayed.
She said some of the girls who were staying there were in the habit of stealing her clothes. I felt sorry for her and she has got a side to her – maybe because she is a good actress – or something, but I ended up falling for her.”
The pair started dating about a month after they met and she soon moved in with Chigariro.
“I moved her in with me at my sister’s place where I was staying at the time in November (2014) because I couldn’t stand seeing her suffering at the place where she was staying with people stealing her things and stuff like that.
“We then moved out when Tin Tin got pregnant. We moved to Waterfalls where we were renting a single room but I was not comfortable with the neighbourhood so we moved again after three months.
“From Waterfalls we moved to Greendale where we were renting a cottage and we stayed there for about 11 months until we got robbed and I felt that the area was not safe for us so I gave Tino rent money to go and look for another place,” he said.Chigariro said Tin Tin found a place in Belvedere but the living arrangements were bizarre and he only agreed to stay after being assured suitable accommodation would soon be available as another tenant was set to move out, which never happened.
… it was supposed to be a commune set-up where we would share the lounge and the kitchen but we would have our own bedroom.”Chigariro, a part-time music teacher, says he was not only the breadwinner but was also responsible for cooking and household chores.
“I am a person who cooks for my family, that’s pretty much my job and that is something I have always done. So I was doing the housework and Tin Tin would just be there or not, sometimes she would be picked up and go out which sometimes got very frustrating.
“I ended up cooking for the landlady’s kids as well because the mother would just spend the whole day sleeping and there was no food in the house so this sort of became a strain on my budget, so I continued stressing the point that we needed our own private
space,” he said.Shortly into their stay in Belvedere, Chigariro made the decision to move out.
“I realised that there was something sinister that was going on at the house and the landlady’s kids actually told me that Tino had been coming to that house for the past four years but when we moved in, Tino acted as if she had recently met the lady.
“On April 21, in the morning, a white Toyota Vitz came to the house. The landlady went outside and Tino followed her. I followed them outside and discovered that they had gotten into the car, which had three other men. And when I tried to find out what was going on, Tino told me to go back into the house pointing out that I was embarrassing myself.
“I told Tino to get out of the car, she refused and one of the guys threatened to beat me up and when I realised that these guys could harm me, I went back inside.“When they drove off, I called my sister and told her to send me a cab and started packing my things because I had decided that I couldn’t stay there any longer. Before I was done, Tino and her friends came back and tried to block me from leaving but I managed to escape with the baby and left all my belongings at the house.
“I went to my sister’s place in Borrowdale and the following day Tino sent her cousin and a lawyer to retrieve the baby and so I gave them the baby. What I just want right now is my baby because I don’t think she is safe with that woman considering what she is involved in.”