JB decrees Malawi fresh polls in 90 days: Banda won’t contest

President Joyce Banda has said using powers vested in her in the constitution has declare this week’s chaotic election “null and void,” and called for an immediate stop of counting of votes in the presidential race, citing grave irregularities.

She cited “serious irregularities” with the poll, saying people had voted multiple times, ballots had been tampered with, presiding officers arrested, and the computerised voter counting system collapsed.

Banda called for a fresh presidential elections within 90 days but indicated she would herself not be in the race.

Malawi's President Joyce Banda says she is annulling this week's general election - in which she was a candidate - because of voting "irregularities".

Malawi’s President Joyce Banda says she is annulling this week’s general election – in which she was a candidate – because of voting “irregularities”.

The President said “in exercise of the powers conferred by section 82 (2) of the Constitution, hereby issue this Proclamation nullifying all on-going processes in relation to the 2014 Tripartite Elections for the election of President, Members of Parliament and Councilors, including the process of counting of votes and announcement of the results thereof which shall cease forthwith.”

But the statement was withdrawn and President Banda went on live interview with Zodiak Broadcasting Station to read out the same statement replacing 80 (2) saying she was quoting Section 88 (2).

Banda said she earlier mentioned Section 80 (2) as “slip of the tongue” but she still stands to her proclaimation using Section 88 (2).

She added: “ And I hereby further proclaim that Tripartite Elections for the election of President, Members of Parliament and Councilors shall be held within ninety days of the date of this Proclamation.”

The Section 88 (2) reads: “The President shall provide executive leadership in the interest of national unity in accordance with this Constitution and the laws of the Republic.”

The Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) admitted that the number of votes cast in some polling stations exceeded the number of registered voters.

“Through the results management system the Commission has identified 19 polling centres of the 1333 processed so far, where the number of votes cast at a polling center have exceeded the number of registered voters at the polling centre.,” said Mec chairperson Maxon when he announced preliminary results of the tripartite polls Friday night.

Mbendera said they are quaranting these results which will be investigated through the Commission’s audit systems.

Mbendera said the Commission will continue to be diligent in identifying these situations, and will share the information of these polling centres with political parties.

“This will affect 19,769 of the votes from the total tallied so far, a number which will not influence the standing of candidates in these preliminary results,” said Mbendera.

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