HRDC Calls on New MEC Chair to Uphold Democratic Principles

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Justice Annabel Mtalimanja

The Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) has issued a statement urging Justice Annabel Mtalimanja, recently appointed as chairperson of the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC), to approach her new role with a deep sense of responsibility and commitment to democratic ideals crucial to the nation’s integrity.

In the statement, HRDC chairperson Gift Trapence acknowledged the challenges ahead for Mtalimanja, emphasizing the importance of upholding transparency, accountability, and fairness in electoral processes.

“We urge Justice Mtalimanja to prioritize the principles of transparency, accountability, and fairness. With 20 million Malawians placing their trust in her leadership, the stakes are high and the expectations even higher. The HRDC stands ready to support her and the team at MEC in their endeavor to conduct a free, fair, and credible election in the coming year,” said Trapence.

HRDC Malawi
HRDC will support her -Trapence.

With the trust of 20 million Malawians placed in her hands, HRDC expressed confidence that Mtalimanja’s leadership would sustain the integrity of Malawi’s elections.

Trapence highlighted the pivotal role Mtalimanja now holds as custodian of Malawi’s democratic process, emphasizing that her decisions and actions will significantly impact governance and public trust in the electoral system.

Mtalimanja takes over from Justice Chifundo Kachale, who led MEC from June 2020 to June 2024, guiding the commission through the aftermath of the 2019 presidential election nullification due to fraud allegations.

Reflecting on Kachale’s tenure, Trapence praised his calm leadership and steadfast dedication to electoral integrity, noting that under his guidance, the 2020 elections set a standard for transparency and fairness in Malawi’s democratic history since 1994.

The HRDC reaffirmed its readiness to support Mtalimanja and the MEC team in their efforts to conduct upcoming elections freely, fairly, and credibly.

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