By Staff Writer
Former President Dr Joyce Banda has told Malawians and Tanzanians that Lake Malawi has always and still belongs to Malawi alone despite recent dragging of negotiations by Tanzanians.
Speaking to Zodiak Broadcasting Station’s Maganizo Madzedze from her United States home, JB said at no time has she doubted the Berlin agreement which was arrived at some 100 years ago where it was plainly put that the whole Lake Malawi is fully under the jurisdiction of Malawi (then Nyasaland)Despite subsequent treaties by African bodies, the Berlin declaration remains binding as put forward by a host of reputable lawyers across the globe.
She said her government made sure Malawi exhausted all diplomatic channels by sitting on a round-table discussion with Tanzanian colleagues to find an amicable solution to the dispute.
At her handing over power to Peter Mutharika, JB had taken all necessary measures to cultivate a perfect rapport between the two governments for continuation of talks. However Tanzania has grown cold feet of late by abandoning or postponing talks being facilitated by SADC leadership.
The recent developments have forced Malawi government to take the matter to International Court of Justice to seek redress, a decision JB thinks is timely and right.
“There is no better time to take the matter to ICJ because all avenues at government level have not borne any fruit. It is right and timely,” said the former leader.
The 30-minute interview accorded Malawians a chance to get a full picture of how the whole Lake Malawi issue has been unfolding in the past decade regardless of any administration in power at any particular moment.