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Politics

Malawi president dissolves cabinet over corruption scandal

Malawi's president Joyce Banda has dissolved her cabinet amid claims that officials in her government had misappropriated state funds. A statement from Banda's office said a new Cabinet would be announced in due course.

President Joyce Banda (pictured above) opted to dissolve Malawi's 15-member Cabinet on Thursday in a move commentators suggest is linked to a series of high-level corruption allegations.

A statement signed by presidential press secretary Steven Nhlane announced the decision, adding that Banda will "announce a new cabinet in good course." The statement did not elaborate further on the motive for the move.

Banda, who came to office in April 2012, has been dealing with a series of financial scandals over the last year. At least 10 junior government officials have been arrested so far on suspicion of high-level corruption and plundering government money.

The disillusion comes three weeks after the shooting of Budget Director Paul Mphwiyo. He was seriously wounded in the attack, which Banda has said was designed to silence him. She alleged he was targeted due to his efforts to crack down on corruption.

According to the former director of public prosecution Fahad Assani, more than 30 percent of Malawi's national budget is lost through corruption. Malawi ranks among Africa's poorest countries.

ccp/slk (Reuters, AP)