Sichinga testifies in Rupiah’s case

FORMER chief of staff at State House, Dr Austin Sichinga, says he edited Rupiah Banda’s letter to the Nigerian government, that was requesting for 45,000 barrels per day term crude oil purchase contract and proposal for solid minerals trade.

Banda is charged with abuse of authority of office, contrary to the law.

Banda has since pleaded not guilty to the charge.

Testifying in the matter yesterday, Dr Sichinga said it was part of his duties to edit presidential letters.

Dr Sichinga, 59 of House No. 6 Ingwe Road, Woodlands, and Makeni respectively, said as chief of staff at State House, he was Banda’s administrative officer who was also managing the latter’s daily diary.

Asked by Director of Public Prosecutions Mutembo Nchito what dealings he had with Banda in terms of correspondence, Dr Sichinga said he was first principal private secretary before he became chief of staff.

He said by virtue of his position, it meant that all correspondence to Banda passed through him.