Malawi leader to address Scottish parliament, seek more British aid

Malawi President Joyce Banda will address the Scottish Parliament on Tuesday where she is visiting to be part of the commemorations for 200 years since the death of missionary Dr David Livingstone.

Livingstone was a missionary and explorer in Africa, establishing the first links between Scotland and Malawi 150 years ago. He is adored by many Africans, ­particularly Malawians, who view him as a reformer and a liberator.

The Malawi leader is also expected to see Edinburgh Castle, and lay a wreath at Livingstone’s grave at Westminster Abbey.

President Banda, who arrived in Scotland on Sunday, told journalists before departure at Chileka International Airport that among others, meet business-persons, non-governmental organisations, schools and funders of schools feeding programmes, Mary’s Meals.

She disclosed that United Kingdom (UK) has funded the trip for her  and entire entourage.

Banda bids farewell to party officials before departure at Chileka International airport in Blantyre.-Photo by Francis Mphweya

Banda bids farewell to party officials before departure at Chileka International airport in Blantyre.-Photo by Francis Mphweya

The President also plans to meet British Prime Minister David Cameron to thank him for London’s support and renewal of bilateral relations with Malawi.

“As you may recall that when I became President, our relations with Britain had soured following the deportation of Ambassador Fergus Cochrane-Dyet. We have since mended the relations,” she said.

She said she would also ask Cameron for more aid for the country.

The UK Government currently provides aid of around £115m to Malawi, and is one of the largest donors to the country, with the Scottish Government providing aid funding of around £5m, he said.

President Banda inspecting the guard of honour at Chileka international Airport before her departure to the UK.-Photo by Francis Mphweya

President Banda inspecting the guard of honour at Chileka international Airport before her departure to the UK.-Photo by Francis Mphweya

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