Court says ‘no new voters’ in 2020 elections


The Supreme Court of Appeal has ordered Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) to use the 2019 election voters’ register in this year’s fresh presidential elections.

In a ruling delivered today on the elections appeal case, the court said no new voters should be registered for the fresh elections.

“The law does not envisage the registration of new voters in a by-election or fresh election because such voters were not impinged in the first place by the impugned decision of the election,” the court said.

The Supreme Court also ordered that candidates in the fresh elections should be those that participated in the now nullified 2019 elections.

Malawi Electoral Commission has already started preparations for the fresh presidential elections with presentation of nomination papers by candidates done on Wednesday and Thursday this week.

Fortunately for MEC, the three confirmed candidates – President Peter Mutharika, Lazarus Chakwera and Peter Kuwani –  were also candidates in the 2019 elections.

Two of the seven candidates, Saulos Chilima and Atupele Muluzi, are runningmates for Chakwera and Mutharika respectively. The remaining two, Hadwick Kaliya and John Chisi, did not present nominations.

MEC has also started registering new voters for the 2020 elections but there were concerns over the registration of minors.

MEC chairperson Jane Ansah suggested recently that the commission would be forced to use the 2019 voters’ register to deal with the issue of registration of minors.