Malawi new diplomat Thoko Banda angers Mutharika with his lies

Newly appointed Malawian Ambassador to Brussels, Thoko Banda,  has found himself angering and crossing paths with his new boss President Arthur Peter Mutharika after the Head of State felt embarrassed with the blatant lies by the new diplomat on his qualifications and home of origin that could have impressed the president to appoint him for the top job.

It has been revealed that Banda has been lying about his Ohio University qualifications and investigations have confirmed the lie. The politician-cum-diplomat never attended school at the USA based school as he has been claiming.

Banda also told the Public Appointments Committee of Parliament that he comes from Thyolo [the President’s home district], yet all his records indicate that he is from Nkhatabay.

Thoko Banda: Malawi diplomat to EU-designate in credentials-gate
Thoko Banda: Malawi diplomat to EU-designate in credentials-gate

Based on his said Ohio University Degree in Political Science and International Relations, Thoko Banda previously served at the Malawi missions in Japan and Germany where at several occasion he rose to the rank of deputy head of mission and at times acted as the head and was recently appointed by Mutharika to head the mission in Brussels, European Union Headquarters.

His recent appointment has just been confirmed by the country’s Parliamentary committee despite revelations from sources within the committee that he did not make the grade to be considered.

Banda is the son of Malawi’s eminent statesman and leading politician late Aleke  Kadonaphani  Banda.

Nyasa Times investigations revealed that despite his claims to have graduated from Ohio University with a Degree in Political Science and International Relations, the university has no records of his
attendance of the university.

Sources from Malawi Government also revealed that President Mutharika  also advised his aides to investigate the claims but have also found out that Thoko Banda does not appear in any of the school’s records.

“At the moment the President is mad with what has transpired so far and his position is that he does not want to be part and parcel of such an embarrassment. He might reconsider the appointment,” said one source.

Efforts by Nyasa Times to get at least pointers from the University’s Administrative Registrar, Dean of Students Affairs and the Alumni Office all indicated that a person in the name of Thoko Banda never registered or studied at the institution.

Banda himself has also been elusive to comment on the matter when contacted.

Ohio University is a major U.S. public Research University founded in 1804 and is the ninth oldest public university in the United States with a total enrollment of more than 21,000 students, who come from the USA and more than 100 other countries.

During the campaign for the May 20, 2014 tripartite election Banda, who initially   showed interest to contest as an independent presidential candidate, campaigned for the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) and endorsed Arthur Peter Mutharika.

Banda was one of the speakers during the DPP Manifesto Launch where he spoke on ethos of
effective leadership.

His initial attempt to join forces with United Democratic Front’s (UDF) Atupele Muluzi failed apparently after his ambition to be  runningmate  were rejected by the party.

The appointment in the diplomatic services is seen as Mutharika returning the favor to Banda. Some commentators have also speculated that the appointment could be a calculated move by the Mutharika camp to buy positive editorials in the Nation newspapers.  Banda’s family owns the Nation Publication Limited (NPL) which was founded by his father Aleke.

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