Malawi Govt. says ready with tripartite polls bill

Government in Malawi says it will during the forthcoming budget meeting of Parliament table two bills to facilitate harmonisation of the electoral laws to allow the country hold tripartite elections next year.

Leader of the House Henry Phoya confirmed that the elections bills will be among new bills to be tabled in the House apart from several others that were left out during the last meeting.

“These two bills are aimed at changing the electoral laws to be in compliance with the Constitution,” said Phoya.

Parliament amended the Constitution to enable the country hold Presidential and Parliamentary Elections along the Local Government Elections and following the amendment it means that the country would have its first tripartite.

Phoya: Ready with bill to allow Malawi hold three tier elections
Phoya: Ready with bill to allow Malawi hold three tier elections

Harmonisation of the electoral laws has been a thorny issue, especially with the delays to bring the bills into Parliament with some stakeholders, notably Malawi Electoral Support Network (Mesn), expressing concerns that without the harmonised laws, it would be difficult to hold the tripartite elections.

On Monday the Business Committee of the House met to discuss the business during the budget meeting and apart from the presentation of the budget, other business lined up include the two electoral bills.

Phoya also said that other topical issues during the meeting include amendment of various land related laws including the Land Act and the Malawi Housing Corporation (MHC) Act and also the confirmation of the
Auditor General.

During the last meeting of the House, the members failed to confirm Auditor General Peter Kamange who is to replace retired Leckford Kampanje.

Major opposition has told the country’s leading daily The Nation that apart from the electoral laws they would also want government to explain and clarify various issues.

Among the issues raised are the status of the Malawi University of Science and Technology (Must) and the Shire-Zambezi Waterway project, the threats of hunger, the Youth Enterprise Development Fund (Yedef), the Farm Input Subsidy Programme (Fisp) and the Public Works Programme.

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