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Mec to meet over MH West elections

Sangwani Mwafulirwa

Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) has said it will meet to decide on how to go about the court ruling nullifying parliamentary elections for Mangochi West Constituency.

Mec spokesperson, Sangwani Mwafulirwa, said the commission needs to thoroughly understand the ruling before making a decision on the matter.

“The commission will meet over this ruling with its lawyers to understand it thoroughly. The commission will then guide on the way forward regarding the judgment,” he said.

Mwafulirwa said Mec is a law abiding institution and respects the court’s decision.

Independent shadow Member of Parliament, Simeon Harrison, went to court challenging Mec’s declaration that Democratic Progressive Party’s Geoffrey Chiwondo won the polls.

Making the ruling, Justice Sylvester Kalembera said he was satisfied with Harrison’s testimony that Mec incorrectly declared Chiwondo the winner but the commission did not prove that they acted in accordance with the law.

He also faulted Mec Chief Election Officer, Sam Alfandika’s testimony that it was clear manifestation of failure by the commission to conduct the elections as expected.

“It is my conclusion that the first respondent [Mec] failed to conduct the elections in a free, fair and credible manner and in accordance with the law. Both the petitioner [Harrison] and the second respondent [Chiwondo] claim that their votes were at some point reduced and I hereby nullify the elections and order a rerun,” he said.

Initially, Harrison wanted the court to declare him winner but the court has just called for the rerun after noting that both sides claim that their votes were tampered with at some point.

Elsewhere Malawi Congress Party’s (MCP)’s Gerald Kazembe is challenging Mec’s declaration that Ralph Jooma won the elections in Mangochi Monkey-bay Constituency.

Kafandikhale Mandevana, Enoch Chizuzu and Foster Thipiwa are also challenging parliamentary elections in Nsanje Central, Nsanje North and Chikwawa East Constituency respectively.

Independent Shadow MP in Chikwawa Central Constituency George Qoma withdrew his legal challenge on how Mec conducted the elections.

But the court reaffirmed election of Symon Vuwa Kaunda whose election was being challenged by Ralph Mhone in Nkhata-bay Central Constituency.

MCP and UTM are also challenging results of the presidential elections which the commission said President Peter Mutharika won.

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