At the Women In Parliaments Global Forum Summit in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, former Malawian President Joyce Banda spoke exclusively with EurActiv’s Rick Zednik about the support she received from EU officials in rebuilding her country’s economy.
“For the past 15 years, corruption had been going on, 30 percent of our resources were being stolen,” Banda said.
“The EU ambassador [Alexander Baum] told me that our financial system in government was being abused,” she added.
She says her zeal to crackdown on cashgate earned her bruises and smear campaign by the allegations of involvement, but would not be deterred.
Banda argues that she initiated appropriate steps, including investigating, apprehending and prosecuting suspects as soon as she became aware of the allegations of cashgate
The financial management system which looters abused was adopted in 2005 by the late Bingu wa Mutharika administration.
Banda became president in 2012 following the sudden death of Bingu wa Mutharika; she had been vice-president although she had been fired from the then ruling party and had formed her own party.
As one of only two women to have held that office in an African country, she was named the most powerful woman in Africa by Forbes in 2014.
Since leaving office, she has focused her energies on the Joyce Banda Foundation, a charitable organisation that focuses on women and children.