Malawi voting day shifted from May to September effective 2025 elections

Malawians will be going to polls in general elections the third week of September  starting from the 2025 polls  following the passing of the Constitutional (Amendment) Bill No.5  in Parliament on Tuesday.

MPs approved the Bill
Minister of Justice Titus Mvalo: Tables the Bill

The country has been holding parliamentary, presidential and local government elections the third week of May every five years.

But the Bill which was tabled by Minister of Justice Titus Mvalo to align the concurrent conduct of elections for presidential, parliamentary and local government and now the tenure of the current cohort of MPs has been extended by one year as the next tripartite elections  will be held in 2025 instead of 2024.

Consideration for the shift the polling day from May to September  came about because of dry and warm weather condition in summer.

Mvalo also tabled the Constitutional Amendment Bill which sought to extend the life span of the current Parliamentary sitting to six years for elections be held in 2025.

The amendment also proposed that the President and Vice President be sworn in after seven to 30 days from their election to address electoral disputes that may arise and to adequately prepare for the swearing in.

Being  a constitutional amendment, the Bill required a two thirds majority vote of MPs present and during the vote,  161 MPs voted for the Bill, one voted against while 25 were absent.

The House also passed the  Constitutional Amendments which according to Mvalo will also see, people who turn 18 by the voting day being allowed to register to vote.

Mvalo said this addresses challenges that were there in the past where the Constitution and PPEA were speaking different languages.

Previously, the Constitution was stipulating that one would only register for voting when they have reached 18 while the PPEA allowed people to register as  long as they have evidence that they would be 18 by the voting day.

Mvalo also presented amendments to parliamentary and local government elections so that members of Parliament and ward councillors get elected by a simple majority (first-past-the-post) and  not 50 percent plus one threshold used for electing a President and his vice.

The passed Bill also provides that Judicial Services Commission will be nominating candidates for the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) chairperson who will be appointed by the President and the presidential election re-run will be held in the event that no candidate amasses outright 50 percent plus one majority in an elections.

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Samuel Chilenje
Samuel Chilenje
8 months ago

September not good month for voting. Too hot to stand on the queue for more than 5 minutes in most of the areas in Malawi. Secondly, why should MPs go up to 2025. General election will be in 2024. Don’t ambush the laws of the land through ill timed amendments driven by greedy.

BellaMbewe
BellaMbewe
8 months ago

Tonse itikwana, mpaka September, ndimayesa June tidzakhala titathana nayo

The Knight Templar
The Knight Templar
8 months ago

These meaningless changes please dont include them on achievements heti. Timvanepo apa bwinobwino.

Truth ambassador
8 months ago

I still believe one important thing missing in this amendment is to deal with situations where the court nullifies an election again. Shall we keep on extending MPs tenure and shift voting month again? Why can’t we revisit justice Tweas thoughts that in case of a nullification there should be a by-election not FPE and that should not be counted as a term. This will reduce frequency of constitutional changes and no change to electoral calendar and terms for MPs and councillors. If in 2025 the court nullifies the presidential election MPs term will be extended again to conform with… Read more »

Alamu Pumani Mwakalamba

Democracy is here to stay and this 50%+1 will ensure that politicians treat Malawians equally. You remember that Chaponda once said dpp could win elections without the north. With 50% plus one dpp will never make it again. It will die a natural death like the parties of Bwanausi and TDT Banda.

Mwini muzi
8 months ago

By the third week of September 2025, the current MPs should have completed 6 years and 4 months.By this time, people will have been very fed up with them looking for new faces.

Mpakateni
8 months ago

So, what will happen if during the first round of polls, there is no outright winner amassing 50+1? If there is a need for a rerun, how long will it take before the second round of voting? Please Mr. Mvalo don’t assume that the incumbent President will walk over in 2025.

Kumavalo Nsamaonetsa Nyoni
Kumavalo Nsamaonetsa Nyoni
8 months ago

What has changed between when this was suggested last time and now?

Everything we do in this country is always politically motivated.

CESSPOOL
CESSPOOL
8 months ago

Nyengo yabwino yopitira ku ma campaign. Pamenepa it has shown that our constitution is a living document which can be retouched from time to time. MCP in the 1990’s placed all campaign activities in the rain season with the idea of frustrating the opposition mobility. Now Malawians would love to attend the campaign rallies while it is not cool but dry the environment will be conducive for all political activities. Moreover there won’t be politically driven violence the police will be nonpartisan as demonstrated during the fresh presidential election last June. A Tonse apapa mukuyenda nalo dziko by removing all… Read more »

Zagwa
Zagwa
8 months ago

This is a 2025 trap. Chakwera pls don’t ascent to have elections during lean time ofthe year

Febe
Febe
8 months ago
Reply to  Zagwa

Zagwa, you are really thoughtful. Given a chance to suggest, I would go for either July or August.

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