April 23 - Former Malawi President Bingu wa Mutharika is buried in his home town of Chisoka. Rough Cut (no reporter narration).
ROUGH CUT (NO REPORTER NARRATION) STORY: Malawi President Bingu wa Mutharika was buried on Monday three weeks after he died from a heart attack. He was entombed on his farm in his home village of Chisoka, 30 km east of Malawi's commercial capital Blanytyre. He was laid to rest next to his first wife, Ethel, who died in 2007. Some 3,000 people attended the ceremony, including several African heads of state including Zimbabwe President Robert Mugabe. Mutharika was a leader widely seen as an autocrat responsible for a stunning economic collapse. Many Malawians blamed Mutharika personally for recent economic woes. Mutharika came to power in 2004 and presided over a seven-year boom - underpinned by foreign aid and favorable rains - that made Malawi one of the world's fastest-growing economies. The good times came to a halt last year after a dispute with Britain, Malawi's biggest donor, that led to tit-for-tat diplomatic expulsions and the freezing of millions of dollars of aid. Mutharika was succeeded by Joyce Banda, former vice president of Malawi and long-time women's rights activist. She was sworn in as president on April 7, two days after Mutharika's unexpected death.