Joyce Banda’s wealth in billions – Malawi newspaper columnist

A newspaper columnist on Saturday said President Joyce Banda is showing signs of unexplained wealth since she ascended to the high office, pointing out that she is also splashing billions.

Malawi government said recently that Banda re-declared her assets early this year and that the information has been deposited with Office of the Speaker of Parliament.

The President’s new wealth was not been disclosed.

Writing in his popular ‘My Diary’ column in the authoritative Weekend Nation newspaper, George Kasakula said Banda is also a [multi] billionaire.

President Banda: Is also a billionairer

President Banda: Is also a billionairer

He noted that President Banda is funding so many projects with her personal money.

“Credit to her, the One Cow, One Family Initiative–I hope I am quoting correctly, there are just too many initiatives, others just political decoys, for one to take track of it all—will certainly empower somebody somewhere and perhaps drive them out of the poverty band one sunny day.

“But this is a massive project that requires massive injection of billions and yet the President has made it clear, it is her un-holed pocket that is funding it and it has got nothing to do with Treasury or the largesse of some benevolent donors. Question is where has  she got the billions,” wrote Kasakula in ‘My Diary’.

He noted that there are several other multi-billion initiatives whose funding the President has been keen to insist will come from her own money.

“Only last week, young men and women across the country woke up to the announcement of a K100 million inter-constituency sports trophy to be bankrolled by the President.

“And then there is the mother of them all—a parallel fertiliser subsidy that goes into hundreds of billions also to come from the full and able pocket of the President.”

The columnist probed: “Where does she get all this money because, let us face it, her salary, which we all know, is out of question.”

The journalist wrote that ruling PP apologists would be quick to say she sources it from well-wishers.

He probed again: “ Who are these well-wishers and why are they giving such colossal sums of money that can even fund a parallel government subsidy programme that has traditional donors  that pour money into it? Shouldn’t Malawians know them or, better still, shouldn’t there be a law that allows Malawians to know such shenanigans?

“Yet, is this not exactly what JB’s predecessors were doing? They were also splashing money anyhow as she is doing today and Malawians do not have an idea where it is coming from.”

The columnist calls on Malawians to “rise up and demand accountability” through passing of laws that empower citizens and journalists to check the wealth of leaders.

However, Kasakura fixed a disclaimer to his article:  “I am not saying the President is corrupt or prone to fraud. All I am saying is that she is clearly exhibiting signs of being a billionaire like her two predecessors and it does not smell good.”

According to deputy chief secretary to the President and Cabinet Willie Samute, President Banda declared her assets when she was only a minister, vice-president and early this year after she already assumed the reins of power.

JB and one of the recepients of  One cow, one family

JB and one of the recepients of One cow, one family

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