The United States extends its sincere condolences to the family of Malawian President Bingu wa Mutharika and all Malawians the death of the Southern African leader after a sudden illness. Our thoughts are with them during this time of sorrow.
President Mutharika was rushed to a hospital in the capital, Lilongwe, on April 5 after collapsing from an apparent heart attack from which he never recovered. A development expert and former economist with the World Bank, he was first elected in 2004 and was serving his second five-year term in a period when his country faces many challenges. As Malawians mourn their loss, the United States remains committed to maintaining our strong relationship and partnership with their country, rightly known as “the warm heart of Africa.”
Vice President Joyce Banda was sworn in as president on Saturday, April 7. The constitutional succession was peaceful and orderly. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton spoke with the new president to congratulate her personally. They discussed the importance of adgering to the rule of law and working across political parties as her government moves forward.
We congratulate Malawi for ensuring that the transfer of power was both peaceful and reflected the letter and spirit of their constitution. The people of Malawi have demonstrated once again their commitment to democratic values as the foundation of the rule of law.