After days of speculation and tension over possible violence, the Malawian government named former vice president Joyce Banda as the country’s new leader. The New York Times reports that government officials had delayed confirming the news that former president Bingu wa Mutharika had died of a heart attack until Mrs. Banda was sworn in.
Mrs. Banda and the late former president ha
d previously enjoyed a successful working relationship until Mr. Mutharika began preparing his own brother for presidential succession. Mrs. Banda subsequently formed her own political party and became reowned as an activist for women’s rights.
Of note is the message that the African Women’s Development Fund released after Mrs. Banda’s swearing in, highlighting her work in the field of women’s rights in Africa.