LUSAKA High Court judge Mwila Chitabo has granted Andrew Banda bail pending his appeal hearing to the Supreme Court. On Monday, judge Chitabo upheld the decision of the Lusaka Magistrates’ Court to convict and sentence the former diplomat to two years in prison for corrupt practices. Andrew, the son of former president Rupiah Banda, had appealed against the jail term slapped on him by then chief resident magistrate Joshua Banda for soliciting and receiving two per cent gratification from Italian contractor Fratelli Locci SRI Limited, on all road contracts awarded to the firm by the government through the Road Development Agency.
But judge Chitabo on November 2 dismissed Andrew’s appeal in its entirety. Andrew, however, has filed seven grounds of appeal through his lawyer Milner Katolo, among them, that the judge erred in law and in fact when he held that he had received K121,065, K30,000 and K20,000 without proof that he had acknowledged receipt of the same amount. After hearing submissions from both parties yesterday afternoon, judge Chitabo granted Andrew K10,000 cash bail with two working sureties in the like sum but in their own recognisance.