Pollster, the Malawi Electoral Commission calls by former has snubbed calls by the opposition Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) to postpone the next month’s by-elections in the wake of Covid-19 pandemic.
Mec is expected to conduct by-elections in seven constituencies and two wards.
The opposition DPP called on the commission to consider postponing the election in order to prevent the further spread of the pandemic.
However, Sangwani Mwafulirwa, director of public relations and communication for MEC-said the commission will proceed with its plan as it has been given a nod from the Presidential Taskforce on Covid-19.
Further, Mwafulirwa has disclosed that the electoral body -has put in place Covid-19 preventive measures which will be adhered to by its officers and voters.
Mwafulirwa among others indicated that wearing of face masks will be mandatory in all centers during registration, voter verification as well as polling and all those with no masks will be turned back.
On 4th February, the High Court nullified 2019 parliamentary elections in three constituencies. The Court ordered the Commission to hold the fresh elections in these constituencies within 60 days from the date of the judgment. The constituencies are:
- Nsanje Central Constituency
- Nsanje North Constituency
- Chikwawa East Constituency
In addition, four members of parliament and two ward councilors have died in the recent past. These were from Ntchisi North, Lilongwe Nsinja South, Karonga North West and Zomba Changalume constituencies, and also from the two wards of Riviridzi in Balaka and Chitakale in Mulanje districts.