Two 'transitions': The political economy of Joyce Banda's rise to power and the related role of civil society organisations in Malawi
374 - 388
Review of African Political Economy
MetadataShow full item record
When Joyce Banda became Malawi's president in 2012, she was welcomed by the international community as an antidote to the increasingly erratic and autocratic behaviour of her unexpectedly deceased predecessor Bingu wa Mutharika. Banda appeared to be the product of the twin drivers of a 'rising' Africa; namely a newly empowered donor-supported civil society on the one hand, and a Western-oriented political elite committed to transparency and good governance on the other. Based on several field trips to Malawi over the past five years, this article seeks to problematise the degree to which Joyce Banda and Malawi's civil society organisations represented a double transition from the more patrimonial form of politics which had dominated the political and civil society sectors throughout Malawi's postcolonial era. Although prepared prior to recent corruption scandals which have engulfed the Banda government in the run-up to elections in May 2014, this article sets the context for understanding these cases as a product of Malawi's political economy and uneven insertion into the global economy. © 2014 © 2014 ROAPE Publications Ltd.