Ben Phiri’s narrative is that DPP did not rig Malawi polls: Admits electoral flaws

Ben Malunga Phiri, a key witness to President Peter Mutharika, who is first respondent in the presidential election case, approach in which he admitted electoral flaws in May 21 elections, followed the pattern set by lawyer Sam Tembenu on Thursday when he told the court in his brief statement that despite some immaterial irregularities, Mutharika won the presidency fair and square.

Ben Phiri claims Tippex was used correctly

During cross-examination by first petitioner Saulos Chilima’s lawyer, Chikosa Silungwe, Phiri acknowledged that the May 21 elections were marred by challenges that included officers filling in inappropriate boxes of the tally sheets because of failure to understand some terminologies.

While accepting that there were a few issues that would have done better but these  mishaps does not warrant nullification of results and a call for fresh elections.

“Many tally sheets were rejected because they were manually amended. Later, Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) provided us [DPP] with an official letter allowing us to approve any manual amendment on the tally sheet and forms used at constituency centre,”said Phiri.

Mutharika’s key witness confirmed that white correctional fluid  tippex was used, duplicate tally sheets were used, things that were already confirmed by the MEC chair Jane Ansah prior to announcements of results and MEC lawyers during cross examination.

On request by Silungwe, the court also played a video clip of MEC chairperson Ansah recorded during one of the press briefings at the National Tally Centre in Blantyre.

In the video clip, the MEC chairperson responded to a question about who distributed Tippex. Ansah explained that various parties had complained about the use of the correction fluid, but she explained that MEC did not provide the stuff.

Said Ansah: “The … use of Tippex has not left out any district in this country—from Chitipa to Nsanje, Salima to Mchinji. And there is no particular party which we can say is the culprit because all political parties are coming forward with complaints about it.”

Silungwe used the audit report as the basis of his questions, issues like use of tippex, duplicate sheets and some results that auditors quried but were signed by party representatives.

Mutharika’s first witness insisted that Tippex was used correctly.

Phiri’s narrative is that DPP did not rig elections but as a party that took part in the elections, they also noticed some challenges which in his opinion does not warrant nullification of results.

Ben Phiri, who is also Minister of Local Government and Rural Development, is expected to be cross-examined by lawyers for the second petitioner  Lazarus Chakwera when the court reconvenes on November 25.

Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :
newest oldest most voted
Notify of
Adzonzi
Guest
Adzonzi

Kulemba kwa kadeti uku!

njpapi
Guest
njpapi

ngati munthu amene anagwilitsa ntchito kondomu court limati mimba ndiyanu nanga izi zoti munthu akuvomera kuti tinabadi koma sikuti zinasokoneza court litiponji?? Nyimbo ya matafale TINGOTI PHEEEEE TIONE

Joloza
Guest

Irregularities are found in any election in the world. Even American elections that put trump in the Whitehouse had irregularities. There are allegations that Russia interfered in the elections so that Trump could win. Those allegations are being investigated. If that can happen in America, what about Malawi? I am yet to see an election without irregularities.

Lego
Guest

Shame indeed!

Kanyimbi
Guest
Kanyimbi

What pple are forgetting is not how many irregularities but were there any irregularities in the May polls?

Tizanka
Guest
Tizanka

Ben Phiri is sharp, indeed there were irregularities just like all prior elections, but such irregularities won’t result into a re-run.

Kumzy kumzy
Guest
Kumzy kumzy

So who Riggs s

kanchenga
Guest
kanchenga

If indeed Phiri acted on legal advise from Tembenu I am sorry it was bad advise. This means Phiri has to quantify the irregularities in order to prove that the irregularities did not affect the results of the election. At first the need quality was for the MCP and UTM. But if Phiri says yes the irregularities were there but did not affect the result then he must demonstrate the basis of his theory baring in mind that Suleman demonstrated the depth of his theory. Apparently Phiri inspite of accepting and listings the irregularities he didn’t prove the triviality of… Read more »

Tan
Guest
Tan

Daft. It’s for the petitioner to indeed quantify and prove that it negatively affected them kkk

MOgul
Guest

we need pitala to come and simulate how his votes were tampered with in central region –please !! Otherwise this dude will come back with yet another
(SONG )

Paul
Guest
Paul

God is great, its not easy a thief to come and reveal the scrt b4 the audience that he is responsible. Lt us wait for judgement the days are already numbered

Ogendaopandamwala
Guest
Ogendaopandamwala

Those who provided tippex must be arrested