A Lusaka High Court has postponed making its decision on whether to release former president Rupiah Banda’s passport to Wednesday.
Mr Banda was supposed to travel to South Africa today for roundtable discussion of former presidents. The meeting starts tomorrow (Wednesday) but delegates are supposed to check-in the hotels today.
Yesterday, Lusaka Chief resident magistrate Joshua Banda refused to release the passport under the pretext that the application was wrongly before the magistrate court.
Magistrate Banda ruled that the application was supposed to be made before the High court.
The truth and precedence has always been that the court hearing the matter decides whether to release the passport or not. This was the case even in the Fredrick Chiluba cases. See here
And another magistrate where the former president is charged with concealing of gratification under the Anti Corruption Act, Principal Resident Magistrate Obsitter Musukwa ruled that the former president should apply for the release of his passport through the High court.
Magistrate Musukwa told the court that only the high court is empowered to vary the jurisdiction.