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Parties battle

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DECISION TIME— A woman votes

Malawians voted Tuesday in by-elections in seven constituencies and two wards and results are expected to shake the former governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

According to unofficial results, MCP is poised to win five constituencies while DPP is in danger of winning no seat.

The by-elections were held in Nsanje Central Constituency, Nsanje North Constituency, Chikwawa East Constituency, Ntchisi North Constituency, Zomba Changalume Constituency, Lilongwe Msinja South Constituency and Karonga North West Constituency.

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Elections were also held in Liviridzi Ward in Balaka District West Constituency and Chitakale Ward in Mulanje District’s South Constituency.

Unconfirmed reports indicated that Malawi Congress Party was leading in Nsanje Central and Nsanje North constituencies in the Southern Region and Ntchisi North and Lilongwe Msinja North in the Central Region.

In Zomba Changalume, an independent candidate was leading the race, according to unofficial results.

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In Liviridzi Ward, voter apathy characterised events on voting day. For instance, at Liviridzi Ward’s main polling centre, namely Balaka District Education Manager (DEM)’s office, only 600 people out of the 3,575 eligible voters exercised their constitutional right by the end of the voting process.

In Chikwawa East, voting went on well despite that low turnout marred the process in the early hours of the day.

Mchacha Polling Station presiding officer Clement Kabu said they did not face any serious challenges.

Six candidates were contesting for the position of Member of Parliament for Chikwawa East constituency after the UTM candidate withdrew from the case.

In Karonga North West Constituency, a UTM candidate was in the lead as we went to bed.

In Zomba Changalume, an independent candidate was ahead of the competition by midnight, according to unofficial results.

Mec Chairperson Justice Chifundo Kachale, who visited polling centres, said the commission was impressed with the turnout of voters, especially in parliamentary by-elections.

“We are quite impressed with the turnout of voters in the six constituencies, where we are conducting parliamentary by-elections,” Kachale said earlier in the day.

Seats in Nsanje Central, Nsanje North and Chikwawa East constituencies became vacant after the High Court nullified results of the May 21 2019 parliamentary election while seats in Ntchisi North, Zomba Changalume, Lilongwe Msinja South and Karonga North West Constituency fell vacant after the death of lawmakers.

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