The Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) has appointed Andrew Mpesi as its chief elections officer (CEO).
Mec spokesperson Sangwani Mwafulirwa confirmed the development, saying Mpesi was successful in highly competitive interviews that the electoral body conducted.
The CEO position fell vacant following resignation of Sam Alfandika in April, 2021.
National Elections Systems Trust (Nest) has since welcomed the appointment, saying things will “now move” at the commission.
“We could see as stakeholders that some things were not moving and we could understand because there was no chief elections officer in place. The commission is there, yes, but the secretariat is the heart of the commission,” Nest Executive Director Unandi Banda said.
An internal memo that Alfandika had circulated in which he announced his resignation indicated he had secured another opportunity at the United Nations as an international elections advisor.
He oversaw the disputed 2019 presidential election which was nullified by the courts.
A fresh poll was ordered, where Malawi Congress Party leader Lazarus Chakwera emerged winner together with his running mate Saulos Chilima.
Mpesi is a governance specialist with about 18 years of experience, ten of which have been in senior management positions.
Before his appointment, he worked for the United States Agency for International Development Malawi office as a governance specialist responsible for elections and parliamentary portfolio.
He holds a Master of Arts degree in political science, a Bachelor of Arts degree in public administration and a postgraduate diploma in health systems management.