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Malawi Electoral Commission to use biometric registration in 2019

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The Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) has said it will use the biometric system of registration and identification of voters in the 2019 tripartite elections.

Mec Chairperson, Justice Jane Ansah, said preparations for implementation of the system are progressing well.

Electoral stakeholders have blamed the current manual system for the irregularities which have perpetually arisen during polling days in the country.

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Ansah conceded that there have been double registrations and that some names of bona fide voters have been missing from the voters’ rolls.

“People have been able to produce their own separate identity cards but with the biometric system, it will be difficult. Some names of voters have been missing on the voters’ rolls but this will not happen when the lists are electronically generated,” she said.

Ansah said the country failed to use the biometric system in the 2014 tripartite elections because of shortage of computers.

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“We are working with the National Registration Bureau. We will use their data when they finish with the citizenship registration they are doing,” she said.

Use of the biometric system of registration and identification of voters is one of the non-legislative electoral reforms which electoral stakeholders are advocating.

The other reforms are counting of votes per stream, delivery of election materials and earlier identification and accreditation of election civic educators.

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