Dora’s trial fails to take off
Trial in former Education Minister Dora Siliya’s abuse of authority of office case today failed to take off at the Lusaka magistrate court after her lawyers Sakwiba Sikota and Sunday Nkonde failed to show up.
Director of Public Prosecutions Mutembo Nchito, leading the prosecution team of six state prosecutors earlier asked the court to stand down the matter for thirty minutes to wait for the defence team but to no avail.
Mr Nchito informed the court that the State was ready for trial.
Meanwhile, Ms Siliya has retained Messrs Eric Silwamba and Company as party of her defence team.
Lawyer Lubinda Linyama of Eric Silwamba and Company told the court that both Mr. Sikota and Mr. Nkonde failed to show up owing to other engagements.
He asked the court to adjourn the matter to May 23rd 2012 for commencement of trial.
Principal Resident Magistrate Joshua Banda has since adjourned the matter to May 23rd, 28th, 29th and 31st respectively for commencement of trial and continued trial.
Ms. Siliya is alleged to have directed the cancellation of a duly awarded tender for the supply, delivery, installation and commissioning of the Zambia Air Traffic Management surveillance Radar system to Thales Air System SA during the time she served as Transport and communications Minister.
She is also said to have accepted a free offer from Selex Systemi Integrati for the repair of a Radar head at the Lusaka International Airport without following procedure.