Malawi Electoral Commission Soften Up On Reforms – Ready to Implement 50-Plus-One System If Passed Into Law

Malawi Electoral Commission ( MEC) has softed up on its earlier position regarding implementation of the proposed electoral reforms in the 2019 Tripartite Elections which may see a 50-plus-one electoral system.

Public Affairs Committee (PAC) and other observers have recommended such electoral law amendments.

But MEC is waiting in the wings for key stakeholders in the review of the laws – Parliament and the Executive – to make a move of amending the laws.

The electoral body says it would appreciate if the reforms are passed in time to enable them prepare well for the 2019 elections.

MEC director responsible for media and public relations, Sangwanu Mwafulirwa has assured that the electoral body “will give all the support” towards the reforms.

Leader of opposition in Parliament Lazarus Chakwera is pushing for electoral reforms through his Malawi Congress Party (MCP).

According to Chakwera, the country’s electoral laws have a lot of loopholes which should be addressed before the 2019 tripartite elections.

Among others, he cited the questions raised over the legitimacy of a government elected with less than 50 percent approval from the electorate, but also a time limit for MEC to announce results.

In the May 2014 Tripartite Elections, President Peter Mutharika won the presidential election with 36 percent of the votes cast while Chakwera came second with 27 percent.

If Malawi had a 50-plus-one electoral system, there would have been a rerun of the presidential election after May 20 2014.

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Source: Nyasa Times

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