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Zambia ex-leader wins right to challenge immunity ruling

A Zambian high court judge on Friday granted ex-president Rupiah Banda the right to challenge parliament's decision to remove his immunity, the first victory in a politically-tinged legal battle. Parliament on March 15 stripped Banda of immunity so that he could be prosecuted for alleged offences committed during his three-year tenure as head of state. But Judge Annie Sitali ruled that lawmakers erred in voting on a matter before courts could consider an application to block their debate.

Zambian authorities say they stopped ex-president Rupiah Banda from leaving the country

Zambian authorities said they stopped ex-president Rupiah Banda from leaving the country yesterday to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Kenya's new president because he was late for the function.Banda, who is facing corruption charges, was turned back at the international airport in Lusaka by immigration officials citing orders from ‘higher up,’ Banda's aide Kennedy Limwanya told AFP.Deputy information minister Mwansa Kapeya said the immigration authorities acted legally to stop Banda from boarding the plane.Kapeya said Banda was to take off from Lusaka at 11:00 am (0

Zambia drops charges against opposition leader

Zambian prosecutors dropped defamation charges against opposition leader Hakainde Hichilema on Tuesday, ending a highly charged and politically tinged case. Hichilema, who leads the opposition United Party for National Development, was arrested in January and charged with making allegedly defamatory remarks against President Michael Sata, while campaigning in a Lusaka slum. He pleaded not guilty to the charge and was released on bail. The case was withdrawn Tuesday after the prosecution made an application not to pursue the charges.

Zambian ex-leader's graft case delayed again

The start of a highly-charged trial of Zambia's ex-president Rupiah Banda on corruption charges was again delayed Friday, after his lawyers questioned the jurisdiction of the court. Banda's lawyers argued that a magistrate court could not hear a case that involved offences allegedly committed when Banda was head of state, because they concern constitutional matters. Magistrate Joshua Banda postponed the case to April 17 when he will make a ruling on whether he can hear the matter, which many believe is politically motivated, or shift it to the High Court.

Zambia grills ex-leader over land deal

Zambian officials stepped up their investigation into ex-president Rupiah Banda's business dealings Thursday, questioning him about a Lusaka land deal. In allegations unrelated to a court case for graft set to resume Friday, Banda was questioned in connection with a 198-hectare plot of residential land owned by an Egyptian investor. "Banda has today been questioned in connection with the acquisition of Baobab land," Namukolo Kasumpa, spokeswoman for the investigators, told reporters refusing to give details.

Ex-Zambia leader Banda's graft trial delayed

A Zambian court on Wednesday delayed the highly-charged corruption trial of ex-president Rupiah Banda, a case he says is politically motivated. Banda, who ruled Zambia from 2008 to 2011, last week pleaded not guilty to stealing a Nigerian crude oil contract to benefit himself and his family while in office. The Lusaka magistrate's court delayed the case to Friday after a challenge from Banda's lawyers, who claimed the specific charge was off the statute books during Banda's tenure.

Ex-Zambia leader Banda's graft trial delayed

A Zambian court on Wednesday delayed the highly-charged trial of ex-president Rupiah Banda on corruption charges, a case he says is politically motivated. Banda, who ruled Zambia from 2008 to 2011, last week pleaded not guilty to stealing a Nigerian crude oil contract to benefit himself and his family while in office. The Lusaka magistrate's court delayed the case to Friday after a challenge from Banda's lawyers, who claimed the specific charge was not on the statute books during Banda's tenure.

Ex-Zambian leader Banda set to go on trial over oil deal

Zambia's ex-president Rupiah Banda is set to go on trial Wednesday charged with abusing his power over a Nigerian oil deal that he struck while in office. Banda, who ruled Zambia from 2008 to 2011, when he lost to Michael Sata, last week pleaded not guilty to sealing the crude oil contract to benefit himself and his family. The former head of state was arrested after lawmakers last month lifted his immunity from prosecution, which he is fighting in a separate court battle. He faces a maximum of five years in prison if found guilty.

Zambia's ex-president pleads not guilty to graft charge

Zambia's ex-president Rupiah Banda on Tuesday pleaded not guilty to a charge of abuse of power linked to an oil contract signed while he was in office. He was arrested on Monday after being questioned by investigators over his role in a deal with a Nigerian firm. "No my Lord, I deny the charge," Banda told Magistrate Joshua Banda, who set the trial start date for April 3. The former president was accompanied by his wife Thandiwe, and senior lawmakers from his party including opposition leader Nevers Mumba, who is also facing graft charges.

Zambia's ex-president pleads not guilty to graft charge

Zambia's ex-president Rupiah Banda Tuesday pleaded not guilty to a charge of abuse of power linked to an oil contract signed while he was in office. He was arrested on Monday after being questioned by investigators over his role in a deal with a Nigerian firm. "No my Lord, I deny the charge," Banda told Magistrate Joshua Banda. The former president was accompanied by his wife Thandiwe, and senior lawmakers from his party including opposition leader Nevers Mumba, who is also facing graft charges.
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