Site icon The Times Group Malawi

Mec risks losing trust—Mesn

Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) Regional offices in Lilongwe have remained sealed for almost three weeks now and commentators are warning that the closure has the potential to erode public trust in the electoral body.

Sheriffs sealed off the building due to unpaid dues amounting to over K23 million owed to a private firm known as Chicken Cottage owned by a Mr. Gaffar.

Head of Malawi Electoral Support Network (Mesn) Steven Duwa told The Daily Times in an interview yesterday that it would be construed as if Mec offices in the region are no longer operational or functional.

“The broader picture is that such closure dents the public image of the organisation to the extent that it cannot be trusted. Few years ago it was Mec head offices closed and now regional office. This is not good for the overall operations of the electoral body,” Duwa said.

He noted that Mec as a constitutional body carries the image of government, adding that such prolonged closure means government is failing its duties to support the electoral body to function properly.

He, therefore, questioned as to what will be the intention of government to let such an important body remain non-functional all this time.

“It would be advisable at this point in time for government to quickly intervene and address the problem. This situation could easily be avoided if government and Mec were working for the common good, meaning government respects the role played by Mec and comes in to support it timely,” said Duwa.

He added that the closure means people in central region are deprived of services from Mec and it would be a big challenge for the management of by-elections in wards falling under central region Mec offices.

On his part Judiciary spokesperson Mlenga Mvula said negotiations are still going on between the two parties on the way forward.

“Me c h a s ma d e a commitment to pay but you must understand that the offices can only be opened upon full settlement of the debt,” he said.

According to Mlenga, the client rendered some services during the 2014 tripartite elections, but he refused to disclose the type of service offered.

A visit to the offices found four employees playing bawo outside the building situated off Paul Kagame Road.

Efforts to speak to Mec spokesperson Sangwani Mwafulirwa proved futile as his phone went unanswered the whole day.

Facebook Notice for EU! You need to login to view and post FB Comments!
Exit mobile version