Ben Phiri confirms electoral irregularities: Mutharika’s first witness in Malawi poll case

President Peter Mutharika’s first witness Ben Phiri  in the presidential elections nullification petition case underway in the High Court of Malawi sitting as the Constitutional Court in Lilongwe has  confirmed that there were irregularities during the May 21 elections.

Lawyer Tembenu (L) and Minister Ben Phiri

Phiri, the Minister of Local Government and Rural Development who is also governing Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) director of elections, was giving his evidence in the witness stand facing cross examination from Dr Chikosa Silugwe, lawyer for the first petitioner UTM  Party president Dr Saulos Chilima.

The minister said that problems ranged from poor lighting in polling centers to polling officers failing to understand some terminologies in the elections.

He also said that some results were rejected by auditors but Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) told all parties to let the results be approved so long as they contained signatures of presiding officers.

Questioned further, Phiri confirmed before the panel of five judges that tippex, duplicates  were used and that results were altered.

He also confirmed that throughout his sworn statement, he never indicated that original tally sheet were used during the elections but insisted that original tally sheets were printed in Dubai.

“Pay attention to my question, which is relating to use of original tally sheets for results collection not ballot papers. Do you have any paragraph in your sworn statement that shows that original tally sheets were used in this election?” asked Silugwe.

“No with an explaination,” answered Phiri.

Before Phiri testified, former minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs Samuel Tembenu, a member of Mutharika’s legal team, laid the case and said the petitioners failed to prove in court that presidential results were manipulated; hence, asked the court to throw away the petition.

But Silungwe argues that their case was premised on two pillars; irregularities and fraud.

He said they were convinced that they have proved that correction fluid Tippex was used, fake documents and duplicates were used and presiding officers, in some instances, did not sign result sheets and log books, which was contrary to the law.

Silugwe has finished cross examining Phiri and Malawi Congress Party (MCP) lawyer Mordecai Msisha is expected to take over.

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joseph
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joseph

NKHANI NDI IRREGULARITY NDI ILLIGALITY if you use illegal means to get votes the votes will be nullified because they are illegal.for example if you change results at national tally center without monitors signing those results are null and void understand this.So millions of votes have been affected by illegality here.the case is already over.I bet.

Chizamusoka
Guest
Chizamusoka

The first past the post election system is not according to Dr. Silungwe. That is what Malawi uses to elect its president.

Kaitano
Guest
Kaitano

And results sheet were allowed and though the auditors rejected them as long as they were signed by Presiding officers NOT monitors? What is this? Chamba eti?

Your days are numbered
Guest
Your days are numbered

Paja Ben Phiri ndi uja anawatchula a DAD kuti ndi a Maliseche a DPP? how can DPP depend on him as a witness he wants mpando wa a DAD kikikikikikikikiki

MATCHONA
Guest
MATCHONA

Freedom is coming tomorrow

Che Wanimiliyoni
Guest
Che Wanimiliyoni

So according to Dr Silungwe ALL presidential tally sheets used were not originals! God help us. All those who are saying Ben Phiri has blundered by admitting the presidential election was marred by irregularities and fraud may have been living in Mars because this has been said countless times and by so many people, last been the previous day Mr Tembenu. The issue is whether the irregularities are enough to warrant a rerun. In first past the post elections the one leading can claim victory or be declared a winner if it it becomes obvious that mathematically he/she can not… Read more »

Kaitano
Guest
Kaitano

Your worry is poverty not the truth. Thank you

Kipome
Guest
Kipome

Do you have data on how many irregularities warrant a rerun?

Lester
Guest
Lester

Number doesn’t matter but there must be a change in figures. Google Malawi electoral laws and read up.

Che Wanimiliyoni
Guest
Che Wanimiliyoni

Lester, Kaitano and you Kipome read the below extract from (Free Access to Law from Malawi). “In Fred Nseula v AG & MCP (msca ca no.32 of 1997) the supreme court held that the constitution should be interpreted in a generous and broad fashion as opposed to a strict, legalistic and pendantic one. In AG v Dr M. Chipeta (msca no.33 of 1994) the courts were implored to interpret the constitution in a manner that gives force and life to the words used by the legislature and to at all times avoid interpretations that produce absurd consequences. In the words… Read more »

Mabvuto
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Mabvuto

Ask yourself if someone can become a president with 1vote in Malawi? Then you will find the answer,

Timbuktu
Guest
Timbuktu

Very shameful to Mr Tembenu these corrupted people and they don’t have humanity, love for Malawian

Lego
Guest

The witness has accepted that there were irregularities so why are we wasting such precious time for judgement?

Kaitano
Guest
Kaitano

If you hear the ANSWER YES from these questions, just know kuti the Spirit of God is at work! So what are we waiting for? Ndiye a Tembe amati the Court should throw away the case to avoid these YES YES YES YES YES from the family?

Lazarus Kappata Njikho
Guest
Lazarus Kappata Njikho

Kkk kkk kkk yah neh Ben Phiri sanakuuzeni Zonena A Pitala Kkkk kkk koma it’s always about the truth so thanks but don’t waste your time please ……😏