via Zambia Daily Mail by Online Editor on 5/30/13
By CAROLINE KALOMBE
THE State has been granted an inter parte hearing in an application to vary bail conditions for former President Rupiah Banda who is facing corruption charges.
This is in a matter in which Banda, 75, of house number 3 lot 2758 Leopards Hill Road in Lusaka, is charged with one count of concealing gratification, contrary to Section 36 of the Anti-Corruption Act number 38 of 2010.
He is alleged to have received nine trucks worth KR471,000 from a Chinese firm, Segacoa Zambia Limited.
When the matter came up for mention before principal resident magistrate Obbister Musukwa yesterday, the defence applied for an ex parte hearing to vary Banda’s bail conditions.
Defence counsel Irene Kunda said a certificate of urgency was filed with an affidavit in support of ex parte hearing.
But State prosecutor Dennis Simwinga said the defence should have made the application in chambers if it was an ex parte and wondered why the State was present.
Mr Simwinga said it was the State’s desire to have the matter heard inter parte and applied for it to be heard on June 3, 2013 because the Director of Public Prosecutions was out of jurisdiction.
In his ruling, Magistrate Musukwa granted the State an inter parte hearing and adjourned the matter to June 3.
And Banda appeared in the same court for mention in a matter in which he is charged with one count of abuse of authority of office, contrary to Section 99 (1) of the Penal Code Chapter 87 of the Laws of Zambia.
A similar application to vary his bail conditions was made and Mr Musukwa said he was not the trial court.
He said the trial magistrate was writing examinations and he would hear the matter on Monday.
“The direction is that the matter will come up on Monday for inter parte hearing. I have conferred with the trial court which is writing examinations and the matter comes up on Monday. I therefore grant an inter parte application for variation of bail conditions,” Mr Musukwa said.
Particulars of the offence are that Banda on unknown dates but between January 1, 2011 and August 30, 2012 in Lusaka received nine trucks.
The vehicles are all valued at KR471,000 and were allegedly obtained as gratification from Segacoa Zambia Limited, a subsidiary of Anui Foreign Economic Construction Company, contracted to construct the Levy Mwanawasa Stadium in Ndola. The vehicles were registered in the names of James Banda, Verecy Banda and Kelvin Sampa.
Particulars in the other matter are that on dates unknown but between May 1, 2008 and September 24, 2011 in Lusaka, Banda being a person employed in the public service as President, did abuse the authority of his office.
He allegedly procured a Nigerian government-to-government oil contract in the name of the Republic of Zambia “which he infact meant to benefit himself and his family”.
He is accused of instructing his son, Henry, to determine the destination of the proceeds of the oil contract, an instruction from which Zambia did not get any benefit.
Banda’s alleged act is “arbitrary and prejudicial to the interests of the Republic of Zambia”.
And Banda told journalists later that he followed procedure when applying for his passport to be released so that he could travel.
He said it was not correct for acting President Edgar Lungu to state that he did not follow the proper channel.
Banda alleged that some people are bent on frustrating him.