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Vol 55 No 3

Published 7th February 2014


Malawi

Scandals to dominate polls

The trial of those accused of stealing state funds could hurt the President in the elections. Insiders accuse Britain of playing politics with aid

Anxiety is growing in presidential circles about the trial of prominent politicians and civil servants in the ‘Cashgate’ scandal over the theft of some US$100 million in government funds. The fear is that it could damage President Joyce Banda and her People’s Party (PP) in the general elections on 20 May. Western governments, which fund about 40% of the national budget, are holding back $150 mn. in budget support until the accounts are cleaned up and measures implemented to protect public funds. Yet sources in State House have told Africa Confidential that they suspect Britain of masterminding the aid cut-off because it wants ‘regime change’. Sources in London scoffed at that idea and said only budget support was affected.

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