MEC chairperson calls for peaceful by-elections

Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson Justice Chifundo Kachale has called on candidates to ensure that the 15 December by-elections are peaceful.

The call was made on Wednesday at senior chief Jenela in Phalombe North during a political debate which was organised by National Initiative for Civic Education (Nice) Public Trust.

Justice Chifundo Kachale reminded all the candidates about peaceful and violent-free campaign process.

Candidates during the by-election

“We have all witnessed the candidates who were available. They were 3 out of 5 we have here. It has been good that they have responded to various questions on issues that Nice put together and also articulated issues they will do to potential voters once elected,” he explained.

Kachale took advantage of the event to announce that all preparatory procedures about the Tuesday’s by-elections are in place.

“So far all our programmes are in place. On Friday we are expected to receive the ballots and they will be distributed on Saturday and Sunday in all 3 vacant constituencies which are Phalombe North, Mangochi West and Mangochi North East ready for voting on Tuesday. As far as we are concerned everything is going according to plan,” said the MEC chairperson.

In his remarks, Phalombe Nice civic education officer, James Chimpeni said they organised the debate to give candidates space to sell themselves to the electorate through the articulation of their manifestos.

He said: “As Nice we are amazed with the huge turn-up of the people who came to the debate and we anticipate to see the same crowd during the voting day.

“We have been doing sensitization campaigns in all the villages around the 15 polling centers to make sure that those who registered in 2019 should have their chance of casting their vote come 15th December”.

Five candidates are contesting for parliamentary seat in Phalombe North constituency.

Out of the five, only three candidates participated in the political debate and they are: Mavuto Bokosi, Promise Salima and Wilfred Lipita -all independent while Esther Kazembe for MCP and Justin Mokuwa for UTM shunned the debate.

Nice organized the debate with funding from European Union (EU) in collaboration with National Democratic Institute (NDI).

Additional reporting by Ayamba Kandodo.