An Open Letter to Zambian Watchdog

17 February 2015

Dear Mr. Editor,

I write to you as International counsel to His Excellency, former President Rupiah Banda and to Henry Banda (Mr. Banda), regarding serious and urgent concerns over articles published on your website over the past week. I refer to your articles of 9 February 2015, “Henry Banda joins Katumbi, Lungu in Mfuwe”, and 17 February 2015, “Lungu, Katumbi, RB, Henry Banda seal arms deal for Zambian military” (the Articles), containing blatantly fictitious information.

As you are well aware, His Excellency and his family have been subject to baseless allegations by the Zambian government and partisan media such as yourself over the past year. During this period, politically compromised outlets such as the Zambian Watchdog have published a vast array of false accusations against the distinguished former President and his family. We can only assume that these fabricated news articles are an attempt to tarnish the good reputation of my client and manipulate the Zambian people.

The Articles referred to above contains information that is absolutely false and fictitious. This letter is a notice to you to stop mindless defamation against my client, Mr. Henry Banda. Mr. Banda is an honorable businessman who has not been charged with any crime. We have physical evidence that Mr. Banda was not present in Mfuwe at any time during the period mentioned in the Articles; as such the allegations in the Articles are fabricated and untrue. These allegations lack any form of substance. The purpose of these headlines is to stir up an attack campaign on my clients with the intent of damaging the reputation of Mr. Banda and that of His Excellency.

We understand the Zambian Watchdog to now in part be funded by a group known as “the cartel”, who view the Banda family as political opponents. In the past, much has been published concerning the Banda family that have been ignored, but this situation can no longer be tolerated, given the gravity of the bogus allegations now made.

I therefore request that you act expeditiously to remove the above Articles or disable access to the links to their webpage and associated social media platforms, in order to avoid proceedings being issued against you for defamation in the London courts.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Robert Amsterdam
International counsel to former President Rupiah Banda and to Henry Banda