Voter registration progress excites stakeholders

Stevie Duwa

Some key electoral stakeholders have expressed satisfaction with the progress of voter registration in readiness for the May 2019 tripartite elections.

Speaking in an interview, Malawi Electoral Support Network (MESN) Chairperson, Steven Duwa, said despite a low turnout of registrants, people are registering as the 6th phase is progressing.

Most people have commended the registration process.

”After we observed hiccups during the first phase as civil society organizations and political parties as well together with the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC), we stepped  up our efforts in voter civic education in order to reach out to a lot of eligible voters to participate in the exercise,” said Duwa.

He added:”Looking at the current registration figures by the commission, as MESN we are overwhelmed with the progress of voter registration, but we feel there’s still more work to be done to ensure that even people in remotest areas are taking part in the exercise.”

Centre for Multiparty Democracy (CMD) executive director, Kizito Tenthani, said the organization is enthralled especially with the conduct of political parties in mobilizing voters to participate in the ongoing voter registration exercise.

He disclosed that since the start of voter registration CMD has been monitoring closely the conduct of the parties towards the exercise ahead of the polls.

Tenthani however urged some political parties which are still shunning the exercise by failing to provide monitors in registration centers to change their stand towards the exercise.

Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) Director of Elections, Ben Phiri, said the party is pleased with the progress of voter registration and that it will continue conducting rallies wooing the masses to go and register in the exercise.

The voter registration exercise in readiness for the May 2019 tripartite elections is being conducted in phases and is targeting over 9 million voters.

So far, MEC has registered over 4.6 million eligible voters.