Malawi Electoral Commission plans to review civic and voter education strategy

The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) says it will soon start reviewing its 2009 Civic and Voter Education Strategy Document to ensure maximum involvement and participation of stakeholders in the 2014 tripartite elections.

The civic and voter strategy for 2009 gave a strategic direction of the conduct of voter and civic education in order to minimize voter apathy and reduce null and void votes.

Sangwani Mwafulirwa who is Director, Media and Public Relations for the Commission said the Commission is expecting that the exercise should start immediately after successful consultants are identified and should be through before the end of the first quarter of 2013.

Mwafulirwa said the review is expected to offer an opportunity to address challenges that were experienced with the 2009 elections strategy while building on the best practices and successes of the same.

Mwafulirwa: Review

“The review will determine which areas have to be added or removed from the strategy depending on their relevance to the civic and voter education strategic direction for the 2014 tripartite elections.

“Among others, the 2009 Civic and Voter Education Strategy highlights areas of focus when conducting civic education like promoting participation of vulnerable groups such as the youth, women, the physically challenged and those infected by HIV and Aids,” Mwafulwira said.

He added: “The document also increases knowledge awareness skills and attitudes about various electoral processes and encourages public participation in various electoral processes which provides an insight to the electorate to make informed decisions.”

MEC spokesman  said the review would give a re-focused direction to the conduct of voter and civic education by the Commission and all stakeholders.

“The review will also offer an opportunity for MEC and its stakeholders to mould a solid strategic direction on how they will conduct civic and voter education that will contribute to credible elections in 2014,” he explained.

The Commission will review the document with financial support from the European Union Democratic Governance Programme.

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