Malawi sells presidential jet for $15m

2013-05-22 12:02
Joyce Banda of Malawi. (AFP)

Joyce Banda of Malawi. (AFP)

Multimedia   ·   User Galleries   ·   News in Pictures Send us your pictures  ·  Send us your stories

Lilongwe - Malawi's luxury presidential jet, bought by late leader Bingu wa Mutharika, has been sold for $15m to raise cash for the country, a government official said on Wednesday.

Mutharika, who left the economy on the brink of collapse after he picked a fight with donors whose support accounted for almost 40% of the budget, bought the jet for $22m in 2009. He said the plane matched his status and was cheaper than flying commercially.

Britain, Malawi's main bilateral donor, criticised the purchase and reduced its aid budget to Mutharika's government by $4.5m because if it.

President Joyce Banda, who took office in April last year after Mutharika died of a heart attack, made the sale of the jet a priority as she sought to repair the economic damage.

Chintu Phiri, principal secretary in the office of the President and Cabinet, said that Virgin Islands company Bohnox Enterprise Ltd had beaten three other bidders for the 14-passenger Dassault Falcon 900EX aircraft. "We have accepted their offer and we are waiting to hear from them," Phiri said.

The plane reportedly cost Malawi about $300 000 a year in maintenance and insurance. 

Since taking office, Banda has also cut her salary by 30 percent, pledged to sell off 35 Mercedes Benz cars used by her cabinet and introduced a host of austerity measures.

Her early popularity has faded, however, due to an IMF-backed devaluation of the kwacha currency that caused inflation to spike to more than 35 percent a year.

Read more on:    joyce banda  |  bingu wa mutharika  |  malawi  |  southern africa

Join the conversation! encourages commentary submitted via MyNews24. Contributions of 200 words or more will be considered for publication.

We reserve editorial discretion to decide what will be published.
Read our comments policy for guidelines on contributions. publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.

Inside News24


Book flights

Compare, Book, Fly

Traffic Alerts
There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.


Create Profile

Creating your profile will enable you to submit photos and stories to get published on News24.

Please provide a username for your profile page:

This username must be unique, cannot be edited and will be used in the URL to your profile page across the entire network.


Location Settings

News24 allows you to edit the display of certain components based on a location. If you wish to personalise the page based on your preferences, please select a location for each component and click "Submit" in order for the changes to take affect.

Facebook Sign-In

Hi News addict,

Join the News24 Community to be involved in breaking the news.

Log in with Facebook to comment and personalise news, weather and listings.