Former President Rupiah Banda has said President Michael Sata is trying to take him back into active politics.
Speaking to journalists just after he was blocked from flying to South Africa this morning, Mr. Banda, who looked broken and shocked at the ill-treatment he is receiving, said he handed over power peacefully because he wanted peace to prevail in the country.
He has also called on DPP Mutembo Nchito to declare interest in his cases. Meanwhile RB lawyers are this morning expected to file contempt of court proceedings against the Director General of Immigration, though the action may amount to nothing under the current judicial system controlled by Fred Mmembe and Mutembo Nchito.
This is the second time Zambian immigration officers under the instructions from President Michael Sata, his business associate and chief propagandist Fred M’membe and Director of Public Prosecutions Mutembo Nchito are disregarding a court order on Rupiah’s travel.
Mr. Banda was blocked from travelling to South Africa this morning despite the court order being shown to the immigration authorities who refused to admit the document referring all queries to their seniors whose instructions they were implementing.
And in comfriming his blocking at airport, Mr Banda’s office issued the following statement:
PRESIDENT BANDA BLOCKED AT THE AIRPORT
LUSAKA, 7th June, 2013— We wish to confirm that His Excellency Rupiah Bwezani Banda, the Fourth President of the Republic of Zambia, was this morning blocked from leaving the country when immigration officers at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport said they had received instructions not to allow him fly to South Africa.
The former head of State was due to fly out on a South African Airways 07:15 hours flight as a guest of the Boston University’s African Presidential Centre which is hosting the 2013 African Presidential Roundtable in Johannesburg.
Despite being shown the Court Order signed by Lusaka High Court Judge-in-Charge Jane Kabuka, the immigration officers said they understood what the Order said but could do nothing about it, as the instructions they were implementing had come from the Chief Immigration Officer Moola Milomo.
When contacted, Mr Milomo said he, too, was acting on instructions from “above”.
Judge Kabuka yesterday ordered the Joint Government Investigation Team to release President Banda’s passport to enable him travel to South Africa.
In her ruling, Judge Kabuka said the former president was not a flight-risk as he has all his possessions in Zambia and young children he was leaving behind, and that the invitation to South Africa was from a credible source, which showed that he was internationally recognised and respected.
In April, again in defiance of a magistrate’s Court Order, President Banda was blocked at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport as he was about to board a Kenyan Airways plane to go and attend the inauguration of Kenyan President Uhuru Kenyatta in Nairobi.
Issued by: Kennedy Limwanya
DEPUTY ADMINISTRATIVE ASSISTANT