Former president Joyce Banda is scheduled to return home next month from United States of America where she had been operating from, and government is preparing her retirement home, Nyasa Times understands.
The former First Gentleman, retired chief justice Richard Banda, has already returned home. He came earlier to attend the funeral of his brother in Nkhata Bay and will not be returning to the US as the former president is set to return in March.
The former president, who is also leader of the opposition People’s Party (PP), has been out of the country on private engagements since June 29, 2014 when she left for the US.
PP deputy publicity secretary Ackson Kalaile also confirmed about JB’s home-coming but did not indicate the arrival date.
“We have always maintained that JB will be returning home and now its countdown,” he said.
While the actual date of return remains confidential, her People’s Party (PP) has started arranging preparations on how to give her a warm welcome.
PP secretary general Ibrahim Matola confirmed the development in separate interviews.
Matola said he could not provide the former president’s arrival dates, citing security reasons, but said the party will announce the date soon, insisting it will be next month.
“JB is finally returning home,” confirmed Matola.
Political analysts say Banda’s return will be good for her party which is currently in civil war due to lack of leadership and direction.
The retired chief justice Richard Banda is on record to have written w foreign missions and development partners in the country, asking them to intervene in “repeated political harassment and persecution” of his wife, JB, by the Peter Mutharika administration.
In a letter dated May 13 2015, the former chief justice said the family is convinced that “the many unsubstantiated accusations and allegations” could be a precursor to much more sinister motives.
But government insists JB is free to return home and she faces no persecution.
Meanwhile, a car belonging to JB reportedly caught fire Tuesday night at Kavuzi in Nkhatabay.
Banda’s spokesperson Andekuche Chanthunya confirmed, saying no one was hurt.
Chanthunya said the Toyota VX, registration BS 7856, burned accidentally.
Northern Region Police deputy spokesman Maurice Chapola said the driver, Benson Davie, 30, told them he was driving from Chintheche to Mzuzu for repairs as it was faulty.
“He stopped and disembarked after noticing that the engine was faulty. Immediately thereafter, the car caught fire,” said Chapola.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :