Nine candidates confirmed for presidential race

Atupele Muluzi Lazarus Chakwera Peter Mutharika

The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has approved nine presidential candidates for the May 21 tripartite elections.

During the presentation of nominations earlier this month, MEC received 10 nominations but one of the presidential aspirants has been rejected after further analysis.

Accepted: Peter Kuwani (right) and his running mate Archibald Kalawang’oma

Those accepted are  Lazarus Chakwera of Malawi Congress Party (MCP),  Professor John Eugene Chisi of Umodzi Party (UP),  Peter Dominic Sinosi Driver Kuwani (Mbakuwaku Movement for Development),  Joyce Hilda Banda of Peoples Party (PP)  Saulos Klaus Chilima of UTM and Atupele Austin Muluzi of United Democratic Front (UDF).

Others are Tikonze Peoples Movement’s Cassim Chilumpha, independent candidate Reverend Hadwick Kaliya and President Professor Arthur Peter Mutharika of the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP).

The Commission has however disqualified Loudon Titan Malingamoyo Phiri of National Salvation Front (NASAF) because the candidate met the minimum requirement of 10 electors in one district only out of the required 28.

“The candidate was requested to satisfy this requirement by 11th February 2019 but has not managed to this date. An extension was made, to this date he has not complied, “MEC said in a statement.

Meanwhile, MEC has warned that any candidate can be disqualified any day before polling should the Commission become aware that the candidate suppressed material facts at the time of nomination which, if they were known, could have led to disqualification.

“The Commission is, therefore, informing the general public that anyone who wishes to challenge the eligibility of a the candidate in the 2019 Tripartite Elections they should follow proper procedures by writing the Commission with substantiated evidence of the ineligibility of the particular candidate.

“Those challenging the eligibility of a candidate on the basis of understanding or interpretation of the law are encouraged to seek opinions of their legal counsel before challenging the eligibility of any of the contestants,” the commission said.

The electoral body however said it will not be moved to disqualify any candidate from contesting based on objections raised through phone calls, conventional and social media, press briefings of which the Commission has not been properly furnished with details.