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Voter verification, registration starts

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Sangwani Mwafulirwa

Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) officials Monday opened centres for registration and voter verification in all areas earmarked for bye-elections.

The exercise will run up to March 7 2021.

Mec Director of Media and Public Relations Sangwani Mwafulirwa said seven centres were opened for the exercise Monday.

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Mwafulirwa, however, said a handful people turned up for the exercise in some areas while droves of people other centres.

“This has always been the case previously, especially during the verification exercise. People know that they will still vote even without verification but our target, as Malawi Electoral Commission, is that everybody in the voters’ rolls should come and inspect their details so that, on the polling day, they should vote without problems,” he said.

He said so important was the exercise that centres would even be open on Martyrs Day, which falls on March 3.

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“Regarding people who are coming to register as new voters, what you should know is that we are only registering those that have turned 18 [years] or will turn 18 [years] by March 7. But we do not expect traffic to be as heavy,” he said.

Registration of new voters is taking place in constituencies and wards that have fallen vacant because of death— such as Ntchisi North Constituency, Zomba Changalume Constituency, Lilongwe Msinja South Constituency, Karonga North West Constituency, Liviridzi Ward in Balaka West Constituency and Chitakale Ward in Mulanje South Constituency.

Mec said there would be no registration of new voters in all constituencies whose vacancies are a result of the court’s nullification of May 21 2019 parliamentary election results. These include Nsanje Central Constituency, Nsanje North Constituency and Chikwawa East Constituency.

Mec said transfers would also not be accepted.

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