Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) will hold the re-run of Parliamentary elections in Lilongwe City South East Constituency in respect to the ruling by the Supreme Court of Appeal on Monday.
The Supreme Court annulled the 2014 Lilongwe south east Parliamentary election’s results and called for a re-run on grounds that there was rigging. The ruling Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) member Bentry Namasasu was declared winner of the election.
Acting Chief Elections Officer, Thandie Nkovole, the commission confirmed to be “putting measures in place” to hold the re-run.
“The Commission wishes to advise all stakeholders that it is putting in place measures in place to hold the re-run as soon as practicable. The Commission notes that this will be the first time on record that there will be a re-run of this nature in the electoral history of the country,” said Nkovole in the statement.
However, Nkovole said they were critical studying the court’s ruling as well as provisions of the existing electoral laws in order to come up with an acceptable procedure in conducting the re-run.
“Since the judgment was only delivered on 06th March 2017, the Commission has already engaged the Judiciary to get a copy of the ruling at the earliest time possible and will, thereafter, convene a meeting of the Commissioners to plan the way forward.”
She said the process of holding elections involves engagement of several public offices and the holding of the re-run would depend on how fast the other institutions can assist to the process.
“Stakeholders should be assured that it has always been in the interest of the Commission to fill up vacancies as soon as possible once they arise so that people in constituencies and wards continue to enjoy representation in Parliament and councils respectively at all times,” she added.
Nkovole then appealed for patience, understanding and support of all electoral stakeholders in this process.
The court’s ruling excited Malawi Congress Party (MCP) which has all maintained that the ruling DPP rigged the elections.
MCP secretary general Eisenhower Mkaka said the ruling vindicates the party stand on the matter.
Meanwhile, National Assembly has refused to comment on the court’s ruling.
Spokesperson for Parliament, Leonard Mengezi could comment on whether they declare Namasasu’s seat vacant.
“This is a legal matter. I therefore need time to consult widely,” he said.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :