Malawi president to sell controversial jet

2012-06-08 22:11

Blantyre - Malawian President Joyce Banda on Friday said her cash-strapped government will sell the presidential jet controversially bought by her predecessor.

Banda announced the decision to sell the $13.3m aircraft was "in line with my vision for economic recovery and also to demonstrate to Malawians that I am prepared to make sacrifices alongside them as they grapple with the effects of the ... devaluation of [the national currency] the kwacha."

"The cabinet has agreed that we must sell the presidential jet. I don't even know why we need one," she was quoted as saying from London by the state-run Malawi News Agency.

Banda, 69, was addresing the Royal African Society and Britain's All Party Parliamentary Group after attending the diamond jubilee of Britain's Queen Elizabeth II.

The no-nonsense president, who prefers to be called Mrs Banda, succeeded late president Bingu wa Mutharika after he died from a heart attack begin April.

Since taking over, she has launched a number of reforms to lure back international donors, whose funds her government depends on.

These include a national austerity drive and floating the national currency against the dollar to end a shortage of foreign currency that has left Malawi unable to import enough fuel to keep the nation running.

Part of the cost-cutting schemes is getting rid of luxury vehicles and the plane, symbols of power and status in this poor nation where nearly 40% of the 13 million people scrape by on less than a dollar a day.

Banda has drawn up an economic strategy to "establish an economic recovery programme to deal with current challenges of economic governance and help stabilise the economy."

This includes developing a more diversified and productive economic model which will reinstate traditional drivers of growth that could generate foreign exchange.

  • Danie - 2012-06-08 22:30

    WOW what a great person...

      JohncarlosBiza - 2012-06-09 00:56

      Agreed. I've been following her for a while and every story about her has been quite amazing. Perhaps Africa needs more female presidents

      Fussed - 2012-06-09 08:37

      You must be exhausted by now

  • Zamista - 2012-06-08 22:43

    i hope what u r doing could be an example to all this so called presidents who r so greedy that they dnt even think of the majority of ppl suffering whilst they live a lavish lifestyle at the expense of da poor....God bless u n ur beloved country Mrs Banda!!!

  • Stewart Croucamp - 2012-06-08 22:43

    Mrs Banda you have my respect. I hope your people support you!

  • Glenda - 2012-06-08 22:57

    Well done Mrs Banda! You also have my respect. Please won't come around to South Africa and teach some people how to run a country. NOT RUN IT IN TO THE GROUND, with all their luxury expenses.

  • mthetheleli.ntshobololo.1 - 2012-06-08 23:08

    They all start there, marinating unsuspecting communities b4 they pounce.

  • ayoadefisayo - 2012-06-08 23:57

    A true leader

  • Nicolaas - 2012-06-09 00:33

    Will you please come and be our Ppresident of South Africa?

  • stanton.clarke - 2012-06-09 00:58

    South Africa needs its own Mrs Banda.

      Bless Boswell - 2012-06-09 08:29

      HEAR HEAR!!

      sedick.gydien - 2012-06-09 19:11

      We HAVE a certain Mrs Zille.....OR De Lille, but alas, we are stuck with 6 (or 7) Mrs Zumas.....

  • marina.poniatowska - 2012-06-09 02:49

    We should get her to run South Africa!

  • AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-06-09 03:24

    She is a great leader ! But one must also accept , that the many who make racist comments on these News24 sites, she would qualify as trash. Respect has two sides !!!

      JohncarlosBiza - 2012-06-09 04:50

      Why should their opinion matter? They are not that impprtant(if at all)

      Terry Wiegand - 2012-06-09 07:55

      English please

      Erna - 2012-06-09 08:02

      You are so wrong. Just read the comments alone - they are just about unanimous in their praise. You are in actual fact the racist one because you confuse valid criticism of the government with racism. The day our government officials give up something to set an example will be when the ice age takes over in Africa. Even something as small as donating their obscene parliamental food budget to hungry children would be praised.

      AnthonyfromAfrica - 2012-06-09 20:09

      Erna, So sorry to have upset you so much. I was just pointing out, that certain comments made here in praise of Joyce Banda, are from the same , who on other News24 sites, make racist comments. Now you can't be a racist here and not there, it is like one can't be half pregnant. And if you seem to justify making racist comments, cause one does not like our government, you are dumb and stupid !!!!

  • Gerald Jordaan - 2012-06-09 04:32

    Mrs Banda we would love to offer you the top job in SA!! You could get rid of all the ANC thieves and their cronies as an austerity measure!! Also you could curb the national population growth rate by simply amputating Zoomers pecker!!

  • Daniel - 2012-06-09 07:14

    We need Joyce Banda for SA president. Wow what a great leader already, Malawi you gonna go up....

  • davison.ndau - 2012-06-09 07:30

    well done Mama JB

  • Tamzin Anne Goke - 2012-06-09 08:15

    if only our supposed leaders would do the same as these leaders! They are what make the country and Malawi is going to thrive with that leadership.

  • Hamrammr - 2012-06-09 08:51

    I always criticize black African leaders and use them as an example of what is not needed in a leader, you Mrs. Banda have changed my opinion.

  • Elizabeth Venter - 2012-06-09 08:54

    now this is a leader who is setting a good example! zuma should take some tips from this amazing lady! Mrs Banda, u r one of those leaders who make me proud to say I AM an African!

      steve.luckie - 2012-06-09 16:07

      It's easy to tell that Mrs Banda is educated, i cannot say the same with our dumb ass President.

  • Piet - 2012-06-09 09:36

    And the AFRICAN NATIONAL CORRUPTORS Turns a blind eye....

  • malcolm.j.patterson.1 - 2012-06-09 10:15

    Wow, wish this Lady was President of South Africa and that the Continent had more like her. She'd stop the rot and the terrible corruption that is rife throughout Africa

  • Richard - 2012-06-09 10:43

    Love her.

  • tamaryn.munro - 2012-06-09 10:45

    Now THAT'S a true president! Makes me proud to be an African today

  • Roland - 2012-06-09 11:18

    Well done Mrs Banda. Funny how this good lady is trying to woo foreign investments & funding while the anc kindegarten is saying "good riddance" to those foreign investors that may withdraw from SA. I just pray that these idiots of ours never get into office!!! (note - NOT power, as politicians should be "serving" the people!)

  • Ron - 2012-06-09 12:48

    She has set a precedent in African politics - and shown the rest of the AU how it SHOULD be done. She has the respect of all. We now need to follow her example and elect similar people as our government leaders.

  • kseyffert - 2012-06-09 13:50

    ANC Please take note! This woman is SERIOUS about her countries economic recovery.

  • chin.naidu - 2012-06-09 18:40

    Have a potential buyer for the President's jet.....can we have direct contact with the Presidents spokesperson.... 27 83 7822728

  • fanie.naude2 - 2012-06-10 11:37

    Let`s import her for our president.

  • peter.vanzyl.39 - 2012-10-03 14:57

    Sell it to Zuma. Then we wont have to fork out for a new one for him as planned!!

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