Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon. UN Photo/Mark Garten

The Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today mourned the death of the President of Malawi, Bingu Wa Mutharika.

In a statement issued by his spokesperson, Mr. Ban said he was saddened by Mr. Mutharika’s death, and offered his condolences “to the bereaved family, the Government and the people of Malawi.”

According to media reports, Mr. Mutharika, 78, went into cardiac arrest on Thursday. However, his death was not confirmed until today.

Mr. Ban welcomed the peaceful transition in the country, and said he looks forward to working with the Government under acting President Joyce Banda, who had served as Malawi’s Vice President since 2009.

Ms. Banda is the country’s first female Head of State.

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