New Malawi President Sacks Eentral Bank Governor

Banda has chosen Charles Chuka, head of the southern African country’s largest fixed-line operator MTL to head the Reserve Bank of Malawi, the Malawi Broadcasting Corporation said.

Prior to joining MTL, Chuka had worked at the central bank as general manager for economic services.

Banda, a former vice president of Malawi and long-time women’s rights activist, was sworn in as president on April 7 after Bingu wa Mutharika died unexpectedly from a heart attack.

One of Banda’s first moves as president was to fire the country’s police chief for the killing of 20 anti-government protesters in July 2011, which drew international condemnation and led to aid cuts.

Banda has since promised more changes, leading to speculation she would fire other Mutharika loyalists.

Foreign aid accounts for 40 percent of Malawi’s budget. Last year several Western donors withheld support over concerns about Mutharika’s increasingly tight grip on power.