Malawi VP returns, silence asylum rumour mongers

Malawian Vice President Joyce Banda has arrived in the country from Zambia where she went on  a “private visit”.

Vice President Banda arrived  through Chileka airport on Thursday amidst rumours that she was seeking sanctuary in Zambia following reports that Malawi government wanted her arrested.

But Banda, who said she went to Zambia in her private capacity, following the invitation of President Micheal Sata to attend that country’s independence celebrations, said she could not run away from arrest.

The Vice President, who looked at ease, was received by members of her People’s Party said the  private visit to Zambia was “highly successful.”

Banda being welcomed by People's Party members. Photo: Nyasa Times

She also commended the people of Zambia by saying that  “Africa needs to learn from Zambia because it is a shining example of a country in Africa where democracy has matured.”

Banda added:”I was happy too see that the people of Zambia are working together  amicably and the unique situation in Zambia should be replicated across the continent.

“ I saw leaders of the oppostion parties and the ruling party conversing happily with each other this is the maturity we need in a true democracy.”

Recently, Zambia and Malawi have come under spotlight following President Sata’s refusal to honour an invitation by Malawi President Bingu  wa Mutharika to attend COMESA summit in Lilongwe.

President Sata’s refusal to honour the invitation followed his un-ceremonial deportation from Malawi in 2007 when he was an opposition leader and was invited to Malawi by former president Bakili Muluzi.

Sata demanded an apology and that the Malawian government should furnish him with reasons for his deportation.

The Malawian government has since revoked the  prohibited immigrant status on Sata .

The Zambian leader has also granted the former president of Malawi , Bakili Muluzi, a television broadcasting licence after Mutharika administration refused him to operate television services in the country.

Joyce Banda: Alighting from the plane at Chileka airport. Photo:Nyasa Times

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