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JB faces PAC to probe over presidential jet sale | Malawi Nyasa Times

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The Parliamentary Public Accounts Committee (PAC) says it is set to investigate former President Joyce Banda over the controversial sale of the presidential during her tenure of office.

In May 2012, JB – as she is fondly referred to by her followers – sold off a 14-passenger presidential aircraft to a Virgin Islands company, Bohnox Enterprise Limited.

The aircraft was sold for US$15 million and the deal was finalized barely a month Banda succeeded her predecessor, late President Bingu wa Mutharika, who died in office in April, 2012.

Malawian President Joyce Banda and the Dassault Falcon 900EX jet 

Nyasa Times has confirmed that PAC has written the Treasury, requesting for documentation regarding the sale of the jet

In the letter dated August 6, 2021, PAC chairperson Shadreck Namalomba his committee intends to conduct an inquiry into processes, which were followed to dispose of the jet and how the proceeds of the sale were handled.

However, Namalomba did not pick our calls this morning when we sought further clarification on the matter.

Last year, the Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) indicated that its investigation into the matter had failed to yield the much-needed results.

To justify her controversial decision, Banda said she decided to sell the jet Mutharika bought for $22m due to the cost of running it.

She said the proceeds would go towards averting hunger and drug crisis in public health facilities.

The then Ministry of Finance spokesperson, Nations Msowoya, said it was a collective government decision that the money realised from the sale of the jet would be used to purchase maize locally and some for legume production.

At the time, food experts had indicated that 10 percent of the country’s then 13 million citizens faced food shortage.

However, questions have remained unanswered on how the two-year-old government of Amayi used proceeds from the sale of the aircraft.

Before joining forces for the June 2020 Fresh Presidential Elections, President Dr. Lazarus Chakwera vowed that his government would go after the people who squandered the money realized from the sale of the jet.

Some quarters believe Banda partnered with the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) to escape justice in the matter.

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