MEC appeals for peace and calm as vote counting continues in Malawi’s presidential rerun

Chairperson of Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) Justice Dr Chifundo Kachale has appealed to the general public to maintain peace and calm as the counting of the votes begin.

Kachale: Urging Malawians to remain calm

Briefing  journalists at the National Tally Centre in Blantyre, Kachale underlined that MEC will account for every vote casted.

However, Kachale has called on leaders to preach peace and refrain from uttering provocative statements that can disrupt the electoral process.

“We have started the process of counting and, as alluded to earlier, all the vote counting will be done at the center,” he said.

Kachale said polling was peaceful, despite some instances where voting started late due to late delivery of voting materials.

He said polling centres which opened late will remain open until all people on queue cast their votes.

Kachale also dismissed reports that a voter in Dedza was barred from voting after her voter certificate was changed.

He explained that the individual registered twice; and could not be allowed to vote using the second voter certificate.

MEC will hold another media briefing on Wednesday at 10am.

The Commissiom did not give a definite date for when results would be released. But it has up to eight days to declare the results.

Deputy Commissioner of Police Noel Kayira said that security teams are still monitoring the situation in the country, but the environment has been calm and peaceful.

He has faulted the tendency of vigilantism and mob justice saying that such tendencies destroy evidence and undermine law enforcement agencies’ capacity to investigate violations of electoral laws

Some 6.8 million people were eligible to vote in Tuesday’s rerun, practically a two-horse race between President Peter Mutharika and opposition leader Lazarus Chakwera. A third candidate, Peter Kuwani, was also in the running.

The Constitutional Court in early February ruled that the May 2019 vote was fraught with “grave and widespread irregularities”, including the use of correction fluid on results sheets.

It ordered new elections be held within 150 days of its February ruling.

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