Dora granted K50 million cash bail, pleads not guilty
Former Transport and Communications minister Dora Siliya has been granted K50 million cash bail with two working sureties. This is in a matter in which Ms Siliya is charged with two counts of abuse of Authority of office following her arrest and subsequent detention yesterday by the joint government investigative team.
Ms Siliya who spent a night in the cells at Woodlands Police Station appeared before Chief Resident Magistrate Joshua Banda in Lusaka this morning for plea, and denied the charges.
In the first count, the former cabinet minister is alleged to have directed the cancellation of a duly awarded tender worth 9 million Euros for the supply, delivery, installation and commissioning of the Zambia Air Traffic Management surveillance Radar system to Thales Air System SA of France.
And in the second count she is alleged to have accepted a free offer from Selex Systemi Integrati S.P.A of Italy for the repair of a Radar head at the Lusaka International Airport without following procedure resulting in the government losing close to K2 billion.
Her lawyer Sakwiba Sikota in applying for bail told the court that it was unnecessary for the Task Force to deny his client bail with impunity. He said Ms. Siliya has complied to all the summons of the Task Force and has presented herself many times she has summoned for questioning stating that he did not therefore see the reason why the investigative wings refused to grant her bail.
Trial in the matter has been set for 7th, 10th and 11th May 2012, and 26 state witnesses are expected to testify.