Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) says it requires K776 million to hold by-elections in two wards that fell vacant following the death of the incumbent councillors.
The two wards include Shire in Balaka and Lupembe in Karonga.
Speaking to journalists in Lilongwe on Tuesday, MEC Chairperson Chifundo Kachale said the budget has been presented to the Treasury for funding so that the by-elections can be held.
“The Commission will announce the dates when the by-elections will be conducted once we got an assurance of when the funding will be available,” he said.
Kachale, however, said annually, the Commission has a provisional allocation in its budget for by-elections.
For 2021 and 2022 financial year, the allocation was exhausted after conducting by-elections in Lilongwe constituencies and five wards, he said.
Earlier, Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC) Chairperson Gift Trapence asked the government to abide by good governance principles by giving MEC funding to conduct by-elections in two wards.
“Failure to hold by-elections within 60 days is a violation of human rights,” he said.
Trapence said delays to hold polls in the two wards is denying people their democratic rights.