Posts Tagged ‘drug enforcement commission’

Nicolae Bogdan Buzaianu suspected to be behind the rebuttal blog posts. PHOTO: enationaltv.files.wordpress.com

Dhaka, Dec. 29 – A series of blog posts claiming that Switzerland-based businessman Nicolae Bogdan Buzaianu who has been implicated in soured gold deal in Zambia have emerged online.

The posts published on different word press blogs claim Buzaianu has been cleared of his alleged involvement in the gold scam and that Zambian President Michael Sata has since apologized for wrongly implicating the Romanian-born businessman in the procurement of the gold which allegedly went missing from the vaults of the Drug Enforcement Commission under mysterious circumstances.

The blog posts which seem to have been authored by Buzaianu or his close aides are published on a blog with Nicolae Buzaianu’s name as the blog header.

Some of the posts state that Buzaianu is not suing Zambia for defamation or claiming US$100m while others say his appointment as Zambia’s representative to UNESCO was never revoked by Sata but that he voluntarily resigned.

It is not yet clear who is behind this arsenal of rebuttal weblogs being published online – some of which claim to have been issued by State House media unit in Lusaka.

What is clear though is that the posts are intended to disassociate Buzaianu from the gold scam which has sucked up several officials that served in ex-president Rupiah Banda’s three year administration – including Banda himself, his son James, his ex-pr aide Dickson Jere and former first Lady Maureen Mwanawasa.

The rebuttal posts appear under wordpress blogs with names such as michaelsatapresssecretary, thediplomatpress, africasvoice, zambiaamswers and fakes of the post, the watchdog and wiredproject316.

Both Banda and State House have not commented on the blog posts.

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Zambian President Sata, "Dr Buzaianu’s demand for an apology and compensation is completely groundless and is utterly unacceptable for Zambia." PHOTO: AFP

Hong Kong, Oct. 28 – Zambia’s President Michael Sata has said he has no apologies to make to  Nicolae Buzaianu over the gold scam.

President Sata said Friday he found Buzaianu’s demands unfortunate.

“Dr Buzaianu’s demand for an apology and compensation is completely groundless and is utterly unacceptable for Zambia,” President Sata said.

He said Buzaianu was at liberty to exhaust all legal avenues available to him.

“Infact, we need Dr Buzaianu to come to Zambia and help with investigations. More details that require his clarifcation are coming out hence the need to have him in person,” he said.

On October 15, 2011, the President Sata revoked the appointment of Buzaianu as Zambia’s Permanent Representative to UNESCO in Paris, France.

This was after the President Sata claimed that Buzaianu, an individual who is on the Drug Enforcement  Commission (DEC) watch-list in connection with the gold scam, flew into the country from Geneva, Switzerland aboard a private jet.

Whilst in the country,  Buzaianu met former president Rupiah Banda, his son James Banda and  ex-State House PR aide Dickson Jere.

Buzaianu, has threatened to sue the Zambian government and the country’s media for US$ 100 million over his alleged involvement in gold sale scandal.

Africa's largest copper producer, Zambia threatened with a US$100 million legal suit by Buzaianu. PHOTO: infoplease.com

Hong Kong, Oct. 26 – Swiss businessman and ex-Zambia’s envoy to UNESCO in Geneva, Nicola Bogdan Buzaianu, has threatened to sue the Zambia’s government and the country’s media over his alleged involvement in a gold scam.

Buzaianu is also demanding US$100 million from the Zambian Government for allegedly defamatory remarks made by President Michael Sata against him.

Buzaianu’s legal representative in Zambia, Sakwiba Sikota said in Lusaka, “his client was offended by the remarks made by President Sata and the reports carried by all the media in Zambia.”

In 2007, Zambia’s Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC)seized 119 kilograms of gold worth over US$7 million at the Lusaka’s Kenneth Kaunda International Airport from Zimbabweans who tried to evade sanctions against Zimbabwe and tried re-export the gold through Zambia.

Zambia's ex-leader Rupiah Banda ready to provide answers to the team investigating the allegedly missing gold from Drug Enforcement Commission. PHOTO: zambiawatchdog

Hong Kong, Oct. 16 – Zambia’s ex-president, Rupiah Banda, has issued his first public retort to an arsenal of allegations by his successor, Michael Sata, that his administration ran a corrupt government.

Since stepping down after losing the September 20 vote, Banda has not made any public remark regarding a carte blanche of allegations by President Sata that he was key facilitator of some illegal deals while he served as head of state.

Banda issued a nine-bullet statement Sunday in which he attempted to respond to claims he was involved in a scam  in which some gold mysteriously went missing .

The former president also expressed his willingness to be investigated over the gold scandal, his administrative secretary, Mikatazo Wakumelo said.

Following the numerous allegations made against former Republican President, Mr. Rupiah Bwezani Banda, I wish to make clarifications on the following issues:

  • That Mr. Rupiah Bwezani Banda has a number of friends both in Zambia and outside who have requested to meet him following his gracious exit from the Presidency after the September 20, 2011 elections. Mr. Banda has granted appointments to a number of visitors who have been coming to see him since he left office. To the best of his knowledge, he has not met anyone who is a fugitive.
  • That Dr. Nichola Bogdan Buzaianu, a Swiss-based businessman, requested to pay a visit to the former President during his planned trip to Zambia. Dr. Buzaianu applied to the Zambian authorities for permission to land at Kenneth Kaunda International Airport 48 hours before his trip to Zambia and the Zambian Government granted the landing rights to Dr. Buzaianu who arrived on Wednesday, 12th October, 2011.
  • That a request was made to the Zambian authorities to extend the usual courtesies to Dr. Buzaianu at the airport which was, in fact, done. He was received by a protocol officer at the airport and taken to the VIP lounge while his immigration formalities were done. He did the finger print biometric procedure at the airport before he proceeded to the customs and exited. He spent about one hour and 30 minutes at the airport while doing his formalities.
  • That all relevant security wings were at the airport when Dr. Buzaianu was doing the usual formalities and at no time did he hide his identity. The former President provided vehicles for his visitor to pick him at the airport together with the state security attached to the former President’s office.  President Banda also requested his former press aide Mr. Dickson Jere to receive his guest on his behalf at the airport because his security did not know him.
  • That after leaving the airport, Dr. Buzaianu proceeded to the Taj Pamodzi Hotel where he was booked for an overnight stay and did not hide at all. He later paid a courtesy call on President Banda that same day. During his stay at the hotel, Dr. Buzaianu interacted freely with hotel guests and staff.  If Dr Buzaianu was a fugitive as alleged, he would not have been openly moving around.

    Banda's successor, President Sata claims Zambia's ex-permanent representative to UNESCO Nichola Bogdan Buzaianu bought the gold which mysteriously went missing from DEC. PHOTO: AFP

  • That the following day, Dr. Buzaianu proceeded to Mfuwe to visit the Chipembele Educational Centre, which he has been supporting as a philanthropic cause. Dr. Buzaianu proceeded in the normal way at the airport and paid his airport taxes before he left Kenneth Kaunda International Airport for Mfuwe International Airport. At Mfuwe Airport, Dr. Buzaianu was cleared in the standard manner as prescribed by the provisions of the Immigration and Deportation Act before he went to visit the school. He flew out the same day with airport permits for his flights from Mfuwe.
  • That President Banda welcomes the investigations of the sale of gold by the Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC), which has been linked to Dr. Buzaianu. All the relevant people involved in this transaction are available and will provide necessary answers to the investigating team but suffice to say that no gold went missing mysteriously as has been portrayed.
  • That on the issue of purchasing or alleged missing of vehicles, President Banda also welcomes the investigations into this matter as he was not a procurement officer. All the people involved in this matter are around and are still serving even under this administration. So they will provide answers as they are better placed to explain where the missing vehicles are, if at all they are missing.
  • That President Banda is available at any given time to answer to any clarification which the current Head of State Mr. Michael Chilufya Sata may have concerning this matter or indeed any issue before they are made public. He remains committed to supporting the current President in order for him to succeed in running the Government. This is the position President Banda took when he made his farewell speech at State House after losing the last elections.

Signed:

Mikatazo Wakumelo

Administrative Secretary

Office of the Fourth President

Sanday Chongo Kabange in Hong Kong

The number of Zambian women being arrested and facing possible death sentences for drug related offences in Asia has continued to rise in recent past.

Although, exact statistics are hard to come by, it has been established that the number of female Zambian drug traffickers into different Asian countries has continued to rise despite several cautions and bursts from Zambia’s Drug Enforcement Commission (DEC).

Unknown female using cocaine, a drug that has hot market worldwide. PHOTO: myhealthyfeeling.com

In 2010 alone, the country’s drugs and narcotics agency said it had arrested close to 15 Zambian women for drug related offences around the world and at Zambia’s various entry and exit points.

It is believed that most of the women traffickers that are arrested in Asian countries like Thailand, Indonesia, China and Malaysia are set-up by their close accomplices or are desperately trying to make quick bucks by conducting illicit businesses.

It has also been established that some of the “not so innocent” Zambian female traffickers are used as couriers by their partners, allegedly and mainly from West Africa.

The female drug traffickers sometimes conceal the drugs they attempt to smuggle into Asia in unorthodox places such as in their vagina, stomach or kids hand carried teddy bears or toys.

Many Asian countries and cities have porous illicit drug markets. But with all this, some of these countries have very harsh legislation and legal systems.

Possession, trafficking or trading in illicit drugs like cocaine, amphetamine or cannabis might attract a jail term of up to 20 years, life imprisonment or even death by hanging or firing squad.

Cannabis usage is on increase. A woman tries a spliff of cannabis. PHOTO: healthylifecarenews.com

Meanwhile, a Zambian woman faces a possible death penalty in Malaysia after appearing before the court on drug trafficking charges.

Mailesi Phiri also known as Linda Chingwengwezi appeared for mention before a Penag State High Court for trafficking in amphetamine drugs, a type of illegal stimulant drugs.

About two weeks ago, another Zambian woman Monica Seketi was arrested at Hong Kong International Airport for trafficking in over 700 grams of cocaine. She risks facing the firing squad in China if found guilty.

DEC spokesperson John Nyawali explained that Phiri faces a possible death penalty if convicted as the Malaysian law prescribes a death penalty for a convicted drug trafficker.

Amphetamine, a drug that is a stimulant to the central nervous system. PHOTO: bvcasa.org

Phiri who is being represented by a private lawyer after turning down an offer to be represented by a state lawyer will appear in court for continued trial from 17th to 19 October 2011.

Before travelling to Malaysia, she had relocated to South Africa where she was living with her boyfriend of West African origin.

It is believed that Phiri was used by her boyfriend to carry the drugs which were concealed in the false bottom of her handbag.

Related links:

Zambian female drug traffickers invade Asia

Zambian Genital drug trafficker jailed