JB says exorbitant nomination fees prevent poor Malawians from participating in polls

Former president and People’s Party (PP) president Joyce Banda  has asked Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) to adjust downwards nomination fees for aspirants saying the current fee structure has made next year’s tripartite polls an elitist venture that only favours the rich.

Joyce Banda during a rally at Area 23 Police ground in Lilongwe
Crowds listed to Joyce Banda: A recent survey conducted by Zomba-based Institute of Public Opinion and Research (Ipor) between August and September this year showed that JB is the most trusted leader

Banda, fondly called JB by her admirers, was speaking before thousands of enthusiastic party supporters at a rally she held in Area 23, Lilongwe on Thursday.

She said the current economic situation in the country only favours the rich, even in seeking political office where exorbitant nomination fees prevent the poor from participating in elections.

In its recent official communication MEC announced that Presidential aspirants will have to pay K2 million. Male members of Parliament will cough K500 000 with their female counterparts parting with K200 000. Aspiring male councillors will pay K40 000 while female candidates will pay K20 000.

JB therefore asked the electoral body to review the fee structure so as to make the election as inclusive as possible for all Malawians seeking elected office.

“The nomination fee for members of Parliament is too much [K500 000]. The poor cannot afford. I will reduce the amount if voted into power. There are capable people who can stand as members of Parliament but fail to do so because of the fees,” she said.

MEC has also been faulted for making the fees non-refundable as opposed to previous general elections when the body used to refund candidates that had amassed a certain percentage of total valid votes cast.

Spokesman for the electoral body, Sangwani Mwafulirwa, T said the issue of the fees is about the laws which Parliament sets to govern elections.

He said such a law demands that a candidate must bring their nomination paper alongside such a fee.

“The same law gives the Malawi Electoral Commission [the mandate] to determine the amount to be paid. Although the law is silent on the need for the commission to consult, the commission took a deliberate step and brought ideas to the political parties before gazetting the current nominations fees,” he said.

Mwafulirwa said the commission cannot adjust the fees at this stage of the electoral calendar because the law requires that the fees should be gazzeted six month before elections.

He said the fees are deposited into MEC bank account and they go into the government’s consolidated fund such that any expenditure is at the discretion of the government and not the commission.

The Area 23 rally was the first of the three lined up to mark the end of 2018. Next on her schedule is a rally at Bembeke School Ground in Dedza followed by a final event at Songani School Ground in Zomba on Sunday, December 30.

With the May 21 2019 Tripartite Elections fast approaching, Banda said she will contest as a presidential candidate and will not play second fiddle in any coalition.

Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :

Sharing is caring!

0 0 vote
Article Rating
Follow us in Twitter
14 Comments
newest
oldest most voted
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Favour of Yahweh
1 year ago

If they are poor, they are not fit to stand, because when elected they will serve their pockets before serving their people. Some will not do anything but it will be time for self enrichment, and they don’t mind the next general elections as long as they have pocketed enough.

Bretton Woods
Bretton Woods
1 year ago

JB, try talking about issues that will develop Malawi. Who cares about registration fees? After all politics is a high stakes game. Maybe you should just help aspiring MPs in your party with the Jet money you stole, instead of trying to change laws unnecessarily

Namaseko
Namaseko
1 year ago

Koma campaign yavuta kikikikikikikikikikiki, her message is all over the place not well articulated at all amangodzuka Ali ndi kambe Izi without thinking about how that would affect Malawians

hatton
hatton
1 year ago

a JB, paja munampatsako Lutepo ndalama za cashgate kukapereka kwa a Chakwera nthawi ya convention ya kongilesi. mongotikumbusa, paja zinali zingati?
Chonde Amayi chikondwelerochi chisanathe pitani mukawaone ana anu – Lutepo ndi azinzake – ku ndende. Komanso ndege yathu tikuifuna. Kodi azungu a Paramount aja amalima ku Mbalachanda aja ali kuti?

Madalicious
Madalicious
1 year ago

Madam JB I thot MEC is an independent institution and it is the only body tht is mandated to determine fees 2 b paid by aspirants. Hw do u assure Malawians as to the independence of the body if it ‘ll b u making decisions making decisions regarding elections in the country?

Gertrude
Gertrude
1 year ago

tinapuma pakatipa anati ziii, zinali bwino bwanji!!! pano ati atisokose eeeeissssh

Ndatopa
Ndatopa
1 year ago

Kulubwalubwa kumeneko! mukanenezi zimenezo lero, where were you the last 4 years??? cashagate!

ndowele
ndowele
1 year ago

amene akuona fair ukayimile mindoyo komaso za licence akufotokoza palibe chifukwa muzisusa apa just digest it and go and paste it at the toilet , mukufuna tizinvera makani ainuyo kamena maganizo asogoleri , inuyo ma cadet mulibe nzeru simunafike saizi yomulangiza muntu , inu koma kuotcha

kendol
kendol
1 year ago

cadet just shut up your mouth there is nothing you can educate us ngati mai joice banda sakukwanisa muli ndi ufulu kuyambisa chipani chanu muzisusa, koma zokala ngati mashasha muli zisilu zeni zeni zoocha magalimoto , mai joice banda amadya kwanu kapena amapenpa Ku dpp kuti zikuwaweni nfundo zaiyeyu kuposa ainuwake amene akupikisana naye , just shut your dirt mouth and allow Malawians to learn from them

JOHN
JOHN
1 year ago

LEAVE THE FEES WHERE THEY ARE. BY THE WAY, WHERE DO U WANT A REDUCTION? YOU MEAN A SERIOUS CONTENDER FOR MP CAN FAIL TO CONTEST BECAUSE OF K500. 000 MALES AND K200,000 FOR FEMALES?

WE ALSO DONT WANT TO HAVE A LONG LIST OF CONTESTANTS. WE WANT SERIOUS MINDED PEOPLE TO CONTEST. IF THEY DONT HAVE THE MONEY, HOW WILL THEY MANAGE TO CAMPAIGN.

ZA UPHAWI BASI!

Finye
Finye
1 year ago
Reply to  JOHN

Having money to pay in order to contest doesn’t mean seriousness. People like retired young pioneer blatant Dausi have money to pay, but have never been serious in their lives.

shares
Read previous post:
Joyce Banda to scrape off driving license renewal, start K10bn revolving fund

 People’s Party (PP) president Joyce Banda has made a landmark announcement that she will abolish regular and frequent motor vehicle...

Close