As the social media-manipulation news is gaining momentum in the country, Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has advised contestants in the May 21 tripartite election to avoid reacting to fake news.
MEC Regional Elections Officer for the South, King Norman Rudi, gave the advice on Monday to the approved contestants for Neno district during vetting of ballot paper templates by candidates or their representatives.
Rudi said with only two months to the elections the commission has noticed rampant false and inaccurate news with limited checks and balances gathering momentum in social media platforms.
He urged the contestants not to waste their energy in reacting to such news rather they should verify with the authority because MEC has its own way of sending news to the stakeholders or public.
“We are asking the contestants to believe in news that comes from MEC not from parties which are not part to the administration of elections. The electoral Commission as at now is very open, should there be news the commission is sending such news direct to all the contestants and elections stakeholders, “said Rudi.
Rudi said the commission has collected email address and phone numbers for all contestants in May 21 tripartite elections so that all candidates are getting news update and other important information about elections direct from MEC.
Rudi also urged the candidates to feature strong and reliable monitors that are able to read and write and follow proceedings at the polling stations.
Meanwhile, all the 46 candidates that were approved by MEC for councillorship and Member of Parliament positions for Neno district said they are satisfied after vetting their details.
One of the candidates, Thoko Tembo who is contesting in Neno North on DPP ticket applauded MEC for the exercise saying its shows how serious the commission is in handling electoral procedures.
“This year MEC is looking to be well organized as you can see today we have been given copies of electoral laws and 2019 TPE stakeholders calendar of events so that we should be able to follow all the activities being conducted by the commission, will not just be hearing it from news,” said Tembo.