Politics well played: Analysing Joyce Banda’s statement

I do not really like the former president, Joyce Banda, just because she does not appeal to my customized taste of political leaders. But when I read the press statement which she released recently on June 29 2015 where she was responding to accusations that have been levelled against her by President Mutharika and the DPP government, I was unfortunately very impressed by the tactical politics well played in the entire statement.

Joyce Banda

Joyce Banda

Though the statement is entitled a response to accusations of Mutharika and the DPP government, Joyce Banda is clearly targeting a broader audience and she is not just responding to Mutharika and government. Rather, she is pleading with interested parties in Malawi and especially the international community whose sympathy she values the most, that she is a pure victim of political witch-hunt. She is de-linking her questionably prolonged stay outside Malawi from rumors that she fears corruption charges, and instead presents herself as a possible defenseless target of an assassination or a political prisoner should she return home.

In order to legitimize her victimization and persecution, she has calculatedly, with facts and real incidences, presented Mutharika to the world as a desperate leader who is obsessed with causing her harm and or getting her arrested on fabricated charges. Joyce Banda has also presented Mutharika to the international community as a hypocrite who tells the world one thing reconciliatory about her and does the contrary vengeful thing the next minute. In this regard, Joyce Banda has successfully made Mutharika and the DPP guilty of plotting against her, and made herself innocent of running away from corruption charges.

But I am not surprised at the politics that Joyce Banda has played here. Banda is a political tactician, and a very good one. What she has done in this press statement is that she has gathered the weaknesses of Mutharika and the DPP and made them her strengths. She has just taken everything that Mutharika and his government have carelessly said and done and used these shortfalls against them to earn herself some legitimate story to escape returning back home. With such a story, even if a legitimate case is filed against her on cash-gate, she can easily claim political asylum among her darling Westerners who already enjoy her presence and interaction.

I know that some people may not agree with my analysis and assertion that Banda is a political tactician, who seeks the easier way out by exploiting weaknesses of her stronger opponents to build her greatness, or to position herself advantageously to secure quick and short-term benefits. But when you look at her presidency between 2012 and 2014, you will agree with my analysis and assertions on tactics of Banda.

When she became president in April 2012, she had less than 24 months to change Malawi which was on the verge of collapsing and face the ballot the same time. Banda, the tactician, made everything simple for herself by utilizing the weaknesses of her predecessor Bingu wa Mutharika, and made them her strengths just like she has done to young Mutharika in the press statement: Joyce Banda simply indentified what went wrong with Mutharika’s presidency and decided just to do the opposite of that.

For example, she knew that Mutharika had fights with donors over gay rights, extravagance, the presidential jet, and autocratic tendencies. She knew that Bingu had problems with Malawians over issues like bad laws, the national flag, fuel shortages, forex reserves and Zero Deficit Budget. And she also knew for certain that Bingu had problems with the IMF over the devaluation of the Kwacha and related economic policies.

To build her own strength, Banda simply reversed everything that had made Mutharika evil, whether it was right or wrong, important or useless: She simply promised the IMF she was going to everything they wanted. She told Parliament to repeal anti-homosexual laws, she repealed the infamous bad laws, reverted to the old flag, abolish the Zero Deficit Budget, floated the exchange rate regime and devalued the kwacha without even thinking. And soon fuel was back, forex reserves boosted, diplomatic ties restored and etc. And all the noisy CSO leaders were gagged and some of them like Undule Mwakasungula just retired and met with God.

As a matter of fact, another sign of her tactics can be evidenced by how she quickly commissioned an audit inquiry into the cash-gate corruption scandal soon after the shooting of Paul Mphwiyo, the Budget Director, and released the report so quickly. Banda knew that, whether she was part of it all not, she need do distance herself from Cash-gate with visible evidence before Elections and she managed to do that just in time. And her miserable loss of the May 20 2014 Tripartite Elections were not because she failed to give substantial change or because of cash-gate. I think I will get sometime soon to share with hard facts, why Banda lost Elections, and why she could and will never be President through the ballot.

However, my point here is that Banda is becoming stronger, because DPP is becoming weaker in the manner they are pursuing her. The best way, is to stop pursuing her, and concentrate on governing the country. If it’s about her involvement in cash-gate, then just provide the evidence and request her to come home and defend herself.

But even if she does not return to answer to the charges, Malawians have worse problems than her. After all, such cases don’t yield anything. We already have Muluzi walking free even visiting the State House and maybe I am the only one who does not understand how his corruption case ended or even how his back got cured.

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50 thoughts on “Politics well played: Analysing Joyce Banda’s statement”

  1. teps says:

    oooo yes lets wait and see

  2. Cashgate Basi says:

    Joyce Banda Anali Wopanda Chitukuko and there wz no leardership in her wht she dd wz jst nonsese kuba akachita….

  3. LWD says:

    This is complete nonsense!
    If JB had any substance to offer, Malawians at large would have been the first to acknowledge and retain her as president. The problem is that she has always appealed for sympathy to the wrong audience – the blind international audience which has often been misguided!
    Even if APM had not used other means to get into power, it remains clear that Malawians at large judged JB as a complete failure – a miserable failure! and it beats me that in their sanity one would use the very reasons people booted you out of a seat after a mere 2 years as evidence of success. What a depravity of mind and sheer lack of insight!

    There were many empty political commentators who lauded JB’s tactics before the elections – scattered foundation stones, a goat here, a cow there, a shabeen here and there. Malawians had the last laugh: How I love Malawi.

    Even these ones today will wake up to the day of reckoning! Oh I love you Malawi!

  4. Tione says:

    Sibande uli chindere chakufikapo nadi

  5. Standwell says:

    Mr Lyson Goodwin, Your article is too long for nothing! Rumbling and u have nothing to say. She does not appeal to your foul-mouthed taste of political leadership because you are lomwe, very tribalistic and nepotistic! and that’s why you couldn’t see anything good in JB’s leadership. You are unpatriotic, egotistical, egocentric and good for nothing people – u have nothing in the head! Dull

  6. gawaza says:

    JB arrested APM then why not her? am not conviced with the analysis otherwise the analyser is just favouring Jb. I cannot stand aside & watch injustice is taking place, jb is connected to cash-gate & is running away from the same issue. Mthalika arrested on nothing. let me just appeal to Mthalika that should just burry the odds. jb also should apologise to a no sense arrest which she did on apm. malawi should learn hw to lead a country in a goodmanner, we are all malawians whether jb/apm.

  7. akukonde akukonde nkhoma says:

    Sibande, action speaks louder than words. even though you declared your dislike for Joyce Banda but your myopic analysis has just proved the opposite. I envy you for lacking analytical reasoning.

  8. dadaboma says:

    Mr Sibande looks educated, at least judging from his analysis. But if he says he “does not like JB”, then he is an educated fool. The reason he is giving for not liking JB – “because she does not look like one of my customised politicians” – is really foolish reason. Malawi has lost a true president in JB. And if an educated person like Sibande can’t see the loss Malawi has registered in not voting for JB, then the villager wouldn’t see it either. And this means Malawi is really finished. I cry for JB; I cry for my beloved country. No one but JB will save this country economically and politically.

  9. Kalusha says:

    Mr. Sibande, these are sentiments of a cashgate sympathizer than an analysis. If I may ask, how much sympathy has she gained in Malawi after her claims of imagination? No amount of propaganda shall let her off the hook if she committed crimes here, government will not be cowed but do the needful with her. She is free to seek asylum wherever she pleases, Malawians don’t give a damn about it. What I pick from your sentiments is that government must ignore whatever she did while leading us? Did she do that with dead man Bingu when she accidentally rose to power? You and me bear witness how much she victimized the Mutharika family including castigating the dead man at every opportunity and you clapped hands, remember? So what so special with her? What are you trying to shield?

  10. Mulohmwe wa kwa Mendulo says:

    Mayi Joyce Banda ndi katakwe pa ndale sizinazi ayi!!!! Mama yu r a Hero & we proud of yu

  11. vado van wilder says:

    y not kumaliza kaye milandu ya muluzi and then the midnight six kenako tione za amayi.kodi a muluzi nsana unachira eti kapena nawonso kunali kuthawa chabe

  12. apundi says:

    mai wangwiro amadziwa kusamala ana ake, anathetsa njala koma yalowanso, kuphana ziwalo zalowanso, pitala wa satanic mwazi basi ndiye kudya kwake, let banda alone

  13. Good observation. But for your information DPP never won the election it is a fact God has already starting punishing us and wait for six month you will witiness poverty as of now there is nothing in hospitals.

  14. Mayiwa mpake or asali apresident, akuchukabe chifukwa kaya aboma akuWopa chani kumangokamba za iwo basi. Koma ndi mayitu ayankhatu zowonazokha zokha,timafuna ukakwera pa mpando waupresident, tiziwona kusintha kooneka ndimaso osati pakamwa polongolora ayi! tiwone kusintha kwabwino ndipo tikuimbirani mmanja.

  15. kalanga says:

    JohnM. Be calm. Reread the article n understand Sibande. Phuma ayi

  16. Ok! says:


  17. Nsena says:

    Jb ndi katakwe. Akufuna kuwaonetsa a brazi kuti alibe experience ngakhale ali pa mpando. She is having a yard stick on these matters and it is to her advantage

  18. kabotolokamo says:

    To be tactical does not mean winning election , some comments! l feel like screaming….. it just shows how dull some people can be . You should go back to school mate !

    1. johnM says:

      Tactics are suppose to achieve results. The ultimate prize in 2014 were the elections and the winner of that, would rule Malawi until 2019. I therefore find the description of Joyce Banda as a good political tactician disagreable. Your statement that tactical does not mean winning elections as an example of naivety. What is the point of being a good tactician if you can’t win the ultimate prize? What is the point of being a good football tactician if you cannot score goals? I may be dull as you put it however you are naive.

  19. mlowoka mlowoka says:

    let her be there

  20. No buddy you have goofed big time!!!! Is this analysis????? I beg to differ.

  21. Monseriwa says:

    Very good analysis

  22. ochewa says:

    Very cute! Good analyst. What dpp and peter should is just to forget her kuti asamatchuke. Anaononga dziko mzimayi uyu. Ndalama zanthu umanguzikhazika adagwiritsa ntchito, koma zopepha mkumagulirila msnkhwala. Mpake anyamata amapakula nanga akanapanga bwanji. Propensity to save means investment not keeping the money idle. Thats y Lutepoyosis and jbuosis.

  23. Ife a diphiphi kupupuluma says:

    Look now, with all the advisers on our side this is whaat we are getting now. Shooting ourselves on the foot. Giving JB a platform to shine even more. Nankhumwa with your big mouth look now kutigendetsa katauluka. Mmalo mogwira kampango mbedza yawedza ka bonya. What a waste of govt resources having advisers. Bola amfumu akwathu ndithu.

  24. Boyoyo Boys says:

    We really saw change in the 24 month rule of Dr. JB

  25. johnM says:

    I do not agree with any of the rubbish written here. If she was a good tactician, then she should have won the elections easily. She had a two year head start over her opponents. The fact that she came third show that she is anything but a good tactician. Don’t give me that election rigging crap. She was in power and an incumbent. She had the whole Government machinery at her disposal yet she still failed to utilise her advantage to win an election.

    She is failing to come back to her own country because she is a coward and she is scared even though there is no arrest warrant against her. She knows the crimes she committed that is why she is failing to come and face the Malawian people. It has nothing to do with the perceived persecution of her by Muntharika.

    Clear Mr. Sibande is naive and he is way over his head on this one

  26. kalanga says:

    Very impressive analysis. Hats off.

  27. Ackson Kalaile Banda says:

    Mother Malawi,Dr. Joyce Banda,our beloved leader

  28. Nivindele says:

    I love jb.

  29. Samuel S pol says:

    Hahaha! Mwandiseketsa nawo uthabani wanuwo

  30. Mawu says:

    Katakwe pa ndale JB…Bwampini tasovatu

  31. benson phiri says:

    long live JB, 2019 bomaaa

  32. clement says:

    Goodwin Sibande apa nde walemba. Analysis yochita kukoma kuiwerenga. Nchifukwa chake a DPP akwiya nayo. Goodwin is not a fun of JB. He declared. The other day write a good analysis of APM. Not like the trash that was cooked by the Cameroonian Idriss Alli Nassah. Tenthani got his reputation thru factual analyses like this piece

  33. as far as malawian politics is corsen they is no one who is not a thief….unless u are just joining politics…..but all those old are expert thieves….thus why they will jump from one party to another expecially from opposition to government…WHY??? ….because being in opposition is easy to be caught…….My fellow malawian let us wait for the coming of Jesus Christ …that’s the only government that will bring pure change…..

  34. Lickie says:

    My fellow countrymen, y fighting wt JB instead of looking for the welfare of poor Malawians. Whn u r busy concentrating in their fight, they r busy stealing. In 2019 you will see another cashgate. Real Govt doesn’t have time to play like this.

  35. Whether u choose to agree or disagree but this is real. The only problem with some readers is that they fell to understand Queens language and resort to distortion

  36. Obey GOD says:

    stupid comment mukulimbana ndi Joyce Banda while Chinkhalamba chanucho chakubacho chili nyeee chitakhalira ma billion misonkho ya athu osauka zimene anaba ndi malemu mchimwene wake sizinamkwane ndiye wabweranso kuti azabeso zambiri zitsiru inu ndi Pitala wanuyo ine sindinamvoteretu ameneyo wopanda mano mkamwayo kkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkkk

  37. nachama says:

    basically this is a good analysis, well supported with facts and with limited biasness.

  38. thinktankmalawi says:

    Jb is seeking asylum. …those press statements are targeting US immigration..she is not returning home to answer charges of cashgate..she is in the USA to stay…eat her stolen money without looking over her shoulders..good tactian by Malawian standard….A crook by international democratic and civilized world..

  39. Bwande says:

    good piece. the analysis makes a lot of sense. JB is seeking sympathy from the outside world

  40. nthandalanda says:

    Koma walemba. Penepenepo! Kulasa osamisa. I think you were once employed as a soldier. Commander for that matter. They are busy with this lady while Malawians are facing alot of problems. Business environment is not condusive. People are killed at will even those in uniform are butchered day in day out. We are not secured.

  41. Dr Mbewe says:

    I agree with the writer.

  42. Joseph says:

    Oh Muluzi. He is cured now? It’s a miracle.!!! Kikikiki

  43. Samarakunjuta says:

    Start by arresting Bakili Muluzi who looted the whole government funds by buying his own busses and houses in sttelenbosch Capetown as well as overseas.The mulakho belt protected Bakili why not JB???????.Thus Malawian politics full of weak scammers hipocrites.

  44. Nyau Isthobwa says:

    Really JB is growing wing because if you can see the DPP Govt they promised alot but nothing tangible –
    1-Chilima said we want Civil servants receiving full salary not change-but up now no where to see Chilima
    2-Malata ,Cement changed the tune saying its not everyone but up now the listed pple not yet
    3-Sale of MSB
    4-Delay to pay civil servants
    6-Market price of forex
    9Failing to handle 92KM cASH GATE -jUST TO METION AFEW

  45. Mwitiwa wa ku Chiradzulu says:

    Lyson Sibande…

  46. OMalindi says:

    Mapazi ako iwe ndi amai ako omweo Abiti Namaloko.

  47. Tikuferanji says:

    I like this analysis

  48. Stevie says:

    DPP is indeed burrying itself deep into the unfathomable pit. It will cost them dearly to redeem themselves with their childish blunders. I am sorry for my beloved party.

  49. Patrick says:

    Poor useless analyst. Ever wondered why your so called tactician failed so miserably on the ballot. Isn’t that proof enough to you handclapper that your goddess JB uses old fashioned tactics which were tried and failed? By the way who told you that the west and westerners enjoy her presence there? Can’t you understand for once that she is a shame to Malawi? Ever wondered why she fell from the worlds strongest women list without recognition? The so called westerners just realised that ‘anaimbila mfiti manja’. They realised that if she was innocent she would have been strong (as she was thought to be) and prove her innocence within the country. Strong men/women don’t fear death or arrest as long as they stand for the truth. The list is endless to prove that both the author and his goddess are citizens Malawi can do without

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