NINE civil society organisations (CSOs) have petitioned the chief justice to consider setting up a tribunal to probe Communications and Transport Minister, Dora Siliya for alleged abuse of authority and failure to follow prescribed tender procedures.
The CSOs allege in a letter addressed to the chief justice filed in the Supreme Court registry yesterday that Ms Siliya abused her official position on three allegations of corruption, abuse of authority and failure to follow prescribed tender procedures.
The organisations said in the first instance, the minister on December 22, 2008 signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with RP Capital Partners on behalf of the Government, disregarding legal advice from the Attorney Generals’ chambers.
They said in the second count, Ms Siliya is alleged to have overruled the Zambia National Tender Board (ZNTB) and cancelled a duly awarded contract for the supply, delivery, installation and commissioning of a Zambia Air Traffic Management Surveillance Radar system (ZATM-RADAR) at Lusaka and Livingstone airports.
In the third instance, the CSOs allege that Ms Siliya claimed a K12.5 million refund from Petauke District Council for two hand pumps for a borehole in Nyika ward when the pumps were procured at K5 million.
“We bring this allegation to your attention for action under the law by your good office to constitute a tribunal as provided under section 14 of the aforementioned Act to probe the allegations,” reads part of the petition.
The nine CSOs include Transparency International Zambia (TIZ), the Southern African Centre for the Constructive Resolution of Disputes (Saccord), the Citizens’ Forum and the Foundation for Democratic Process (Fodep).
The rest are Women for Change (WfC), Civil Society for Trade Network, Civil Society for Poverty Reduction (CSPR), Jesuit Centre for Theological Reflection (JCTR) and the Zambian Youths Association Against Corruption.
The petition by the CSOs follows a similar one by former Communication and Transport minister, William Harrington.
[Times of Zambia]