THREE Lusaka lawyers have withdrawn from representing Fratelli Locci the co-accused of President Rupiah Banda's son, Andrew in a corruption case.
Sakwiba Sikota, Eric Silwamba and Jack Mwiimbu are no longer giving legal services to Locci.
Locci, director at an Italian construction company and Banda are jointly charged with two counts of gratification for giving assistance on contracts.
When the matter came up before Lusaka Chief Resident Magistrate Joshua Banda yesterday, Mr Sikota said he and two others have received instructions from Locci to stop representing him in the criminal matter he is facing.
"Your honour, we would like to inform the court that we have received instructions to stop representing the second accused person and as such we would like to withdraw our representation," Mr Sikota said.
Earlier, Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP) Mutembo Nchito told the court that the matter was scheduled for trial going by the earlier dates that the court had set.
He said the State had however received a notice from Locci's lawyers that he had withdrawn his appeal in the Supreme Court.
Mr Nchito said the State was ready to proceed with trial but they were mindful of the ruling made by Lusaka High Court judge Evans Hamaundu on October 3, 2012 in which he directed the magistrate to issue a substantive ruling.
Mr Banda adjourned the matter to today to make a ruling on whether charging of the duo under the repealed Anti-Corruption Act number 38 of 2010 was wrong.
Particulars in the first count are that Banda, being First Secretary at the Zambian Embassy in Italy and later deputy High Commissioner to India, solicited to receive gratification from Locci amounting to two per cent of all monies paid to Frattelli Locci SRI by the Road Development Agency (RDA).
It is alleged in the second count that Locci on the same dates in Lusaka, agreed to give gratification to Banda amounting to two percent of all money paid to Fratelli Locci SRI by RDA.