The country’s former head and state Joyce Banda (JB) this week told the international media organization Aljazeera that there was no warrant of arrest on her head but a mere political gimmick.
Banda who is the Peoples Party (PP) leader therefore disclosed that is intending to return home any time soon arguing that there was nothing to fear about in Malawi.
The PP leader told Al Jazeera’s current affairs program that the governing Democratic Progress Party (DPP) was just persecuting her for nothing.
Asked about the warrant of arrest which Police claimed it was issued against her, Banda said she was not provided with a copy of the warrant and the information about the court that issued it.
“There was no warrant of arrest that was issued by Malawi Police. Up until now, there is no warrant of arrest. It was a press statement [that they would issue a warrant of arrest,” challenged Banda.
Quizzed on her role to Cashgate, the former Malawi leader insisted that after learning about the financial malfeasance, she asked British government to help with forensic audit to clean the system of the looting which has been there before she came to power.
“And through RSM (formerly Baker Tilly) the audit was conducted and exposed the large picture of Cashgate. How many presidents in Africa would conduct forensic audit of their government. I am the only president who got to the bottom of corruption and instituted the first-ever commission of inquiry into corruption,”emphasized Banda patting herself on the back for taking a bold move.
Asked that some Cashgate convicts have mentioned her name in the scandal, JB said the people were pressured to soil her name.
“I have evidence people were approached to implicate me [in cashgate]. I don’t have to clear my name, because Malawians know what I did and my conscious is very clear,” she stressed.
Some months ago Malawi Police issued a warrant of arrest to Banda in connection with the country’s “Cashgate” corruption scandal, which involved large-scale looting of government coffers.
The Malawi former president has been living abroad since she lost to President Peter Mutharika in the 2014 election.
She has been living in the United States, serving as a distinguished fellow at Woodrow Wilson Center and the Center for Global Development in Washington, DC.
Cashgate is the biggest financial scandal in Malawi’s history and helped push Banda out of power in 2014.
That came after she ordered an audit the previous year which discovered that $30 million had been looted by officials in less than six months in 2013.
Dozens of civil servants, business people and politicians have since been implicated in the scam, and some have been jailed.
Consequently, Malawi’s developmental partners and donors pulled the plug on aid of around US$150 million over the scandal.