Rupiah Banda avoids media on his arrival from South Africa

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FORMER Republican president Rupiah Banda has returned from South Africa where he had gone for medical check-ups.

Mr Banda was given 16 days from October 4, to October 20, 2013 by the Lusaka High Court in which to seek medical attention.

Meanwhile, Mr Banda’s office yesterday instructed officials at the Kenneth Kaunda International Airport not to allow members of the Press to cover his arrival from South Africa.

Mr Banda arrived yesterday around 16:00 hours aboard South African airways plane and was immediately driven from the airport as journalists, who had been at the airport from 14:30 were still negotiating entry to interview him.

The journalists, who kept on being referred from one office to another by airport and immigration officials for close to two hours, were later informed by senior liaison and protocol officer Bennie Silwamba in a telephone conversation that Mr Banda’s assistant for Press and public relations Kennedy Limwanya had issued instructions not to allow journalists to cover the former head of State’s arrival.

But when contacted on phone, Mr Limwanya refuted having issued such instructions and promised to call back. However, by press time he had not done so.

Lusaka High Court Judge Anesi Banda-Bobo had ordered and directed that Mr Banda’s passport be released to enable him travel for medical check-up.

Mr Banda who had been on a travel ban had his diplomatic passport cancelled by the Government in June this year has since been issued with a new one.

This was after President Michael Sata allowed Mr Banda to travel to South Africa following his request to the Head of State.

Meanwhile, Justice Minister Wynter Kabimba yesterday refused to give an interview to journalists when he returned from Latin America where he, as president of Council of African Political Parties, delivered a key note address during discussion on  uniting  political parties in Africa, Asia and Latin and Central America.

Mr Kabimba arrived at Kenneth Kaunda international airport at about 15:45 hours aboard an Ethiopian airlines but declined to give an interview to journalists.

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