In Malawi, a spokesman for the ruling United Democratic Party has rejected opposition attacks against its candidate for president, Bingu Wa Mutharika.

This week, the Nation newspaper alleged that Mr. Mutharika?s PhD in Development Economics was bought from a fraudulent, non-accredited institution in California. Other papers reported on a 1997 report from the Common Market for Southern and Eastern Africa that said Mr. Mutharika should be dismissed as secretary-general for abuse of office.

A spokesman for the UDF party dismissed both charges as unfair, saying Mr. Mutharika completed all of his degrees in economics. He said the charges were motivated by electoral politics. English to Africa reporter William Eagle spoke with a spokesman for Malawi?s ruling United Democratic Front party, Humphrey Mvula.

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