5 February 2013

Zambia: RB Summoned - ACC,DEC Want to Quiz Him

Photo: Nation
Zambia President Rupiah Banda inspects a guard of honour during the swearing-in ceremony in Lusaka.

FORMER Republican President Rupiah Banda has been summoned to appear before the Government Joint Investigations Team over allegations of corruption and other criminal activities.

Mr Banda, who was defeated in the September 20, 2011 general elections, becomes the latest high-profile figure to be summoned before investigative wings after several of his former Cabinet ministers availed themselves for questioning.

His son, Andrew is already on trial over corruption charges in road contracts signed between the Road Development Agency and Fratelli Locci Construction Company, an Italian firm.

His other son Henry, who is based in South Africa, is being sought by law enforcement agencies for corruption related matters but has refused to avail himself.

According to a summon dated February 4, 2013 signed by Anti-Corruption Commission (ACC) director-general Rosewin Wandi, the former President is expected to appear at the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC) head office in Lusaka on Thursday this week in the morning.

"The Government Joint Investigations Team has been carrying out investigations into allegations of corruption and other criminal activities in which you have been named," Ms Wandi said in the summon addressed to Mr Banda.

Ms Wandi noted that the investigations team was aware that Mr Banda enjoyed immunity as former President but that it was in his best interest to defend himself against allegations levelled against him.

"We are mindful that you currently enjoy immunity from prosecution on offences allegedly committed, while you served as Republican President.

"However, it might serve your interests to avail yourself the opportunity to provide answers to the allegations made against you without losing your immunity," she said.

The ACC chief advised Mr Banda that in an event he decides not to avail himself, the law enforcement agencies will pursue other legal avenues.

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