Phalombe District Interfaith Committee (DIAC) conducted prayers for free and fair tripartite elections at Phalombe Secondary School hall on Wednesday.
DIAC’s Chair Sheikh Sitolo said the prayers were organized to bring peace in the district as the country will be having elections on 21st May.
“We organized these prayers knowing that during the campaign period until the polling day a lot of violence occurs in different districts. We don’t take this for granted, people from different religious backgrounds in Phalombe have come together to pray for peaceful and fair elections in our country.”
In his remarks, District Civil Education Officer (DCEO) for National Initiative for Civic Education (NICE) Trust in Phalombe James Chimpeni who was present at the prayers said candidates should sensitize voters during the campaign meetings on how to vote properly to avoid null and void votes.
“Every aspiring candidate has to play a role in enlightening their followers during meetings on how to vote for them on the polling day, hence null and void votes will be reduced.”
Chimpeni added that candidates have the freedom to campaign peacefully without provoking other candidates. After the winner is announced every candidate should accept his or her position whether on the winning or losing side.
Speaking at the function, District Elections Officer for Malawi Electoral Commission in the district, Michael Mapando, who was also the guest of honor encouraged registered voters who have lost their voter certificates as well as the national ID’s through the floods not to worry for they will still vote come 21st May.
“We have been receiving complaints in our office from the flood victims, asking if they will still have a chance to vote despite losing their voters certificates. Names of each and every registered voter are still on the voters list in MEC’s system, once someone goes to the center where he/she got registered will be assisted and be able to vote.”
Phalombe is among the districts affected by floods in the past two weeks. Most of the victims lost their voter certificates.
The prayers were conducted under the theme “Free and fair elections.”