MEC voted the most open public institution in Malawi: Gets ‘golden key’ Misa award

The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has been recognized as the Most Open Public Institution in Malawi and has been awarded the Golden Key Award by the Media Institute of Southern (MISA) Malawi Chapter.

Aurelie Valtat, EU head of political, press and information handing over the award certificate to MEC spokesperson, Sangwani Mwafulirwa
MEC chairperson Justice Chifundo Kachale (C) with MEC spokesman Sangwani Mwafulirwa (L) and Chief Elections Officer Sam Alfandika

The award was given by the Media Institute of Southern Africa (MISA) Malawi as part of the commemoration of the Right to Information Day which falls on 28th September every year.

The Mzuzu City Council was awarded the Golden Padlock Award for being the most closed organization among all the ten institutions that were studied by the MISA between June and August this year.

Speaking during the presentation of the Transparency Assessment Report 2020, MISA Programme Officer, Moses Chitsulo said the study was conducted in June 2020 and involved analyzing the tools for public information like the website and social media platforms.

“We also used local citizens to send out requests for information from the organisations so that we can see how they can be helped. If we used the media, the organizations would be quick to respond just because the request is from the media,” he said.

Chitsulo said the results of the study showed that there has been improvement in online presence as eight institutions had functional websites, most of which contained up-to-date information.

“Public institutions are opening up for public queries or request for information although some are not acting on the requests.  They are also recognising importance of social media platforms in giving out information,” he said.

However, he noted that the institutions were not ready to give out information about budgets, expenditure, procurement and signed contracts.

In an interview with Nyasa Times after receiving the award, MEC Director of Media and Public Relations, Sangwani Mwafulirwa said it was a great honour to get the award for the fourth time since it was started.

“It was not easy. The competition was stiff if you look at the scores and we are happy to have come out the best. It signifies that what we are doing is being recognized out there,” he said.

Mwafulirwa said that they had noted the shortfalls that had been mentioned by the reports and will work on them to continue being an organization that is open with information more especially that the Access to Information Act is operational.

MISA has been producing the transparency assessment reports for 11 years having started in 2009 and the aim is to ascertain the openness of public institutions and also as part of the campaign on access to information.

The organizations that were studied by MISA this year are Blantyre City Council (BCC), Lilongwe City Council (LCC), Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC), Malawi Energy Regulatory Authority (MERA), Ministry of Agriculture and Food Security, Ministry of Education, Science and Technology, Ministry of Health and Population, Ministry of Information and Communications Technology, Ministry of Local Government and Rural Development and Mzuzu City Council (MCC).

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Hawell
Hawell
8 months ago

Bravo jane Maghemo Ansah and your team thus Alufandika, Mwafulirwa and others for the good job well done to put MEC on the map as transparent and accountable. For Kachale he admitted himself that the people before him did the great job thats why it was easy for him to manage the 2020 June 23 Presidential elections and this is a fact ulemu kwa Kachale for recognizing the good work others did before him this is quite commendable a Malawi lets emulate this.

Kabuchibuchi
8 months ago

Atumbuka okhaokha kutukulana. Here Ndanga (otuluka mano pamtunda uja) of MISA wants to put Kachale (uja owerenga mavoti a mcp when DPP monitors were hacked and chased from poling stations) of MEC in the limelight. Atumbuka ndichoncho. Very nepotistic.

Leader of opposition
Leader of opposition
8 months ago
Reply to  Kabuchibuchi

Mukulorabe kodi ma cadet? Basi pumulani . Nankhumwa ndiye wavutanso mubanguladi

Alamu Pumani Mwakalamba

Alfandika should explain what happened to the 2019 elections.

gama
gama
8 months ago

To politicians not BVRK operators

William Chirwa
8 months ago

Congrats to MEC whether its genuine or not that argument will come another day. As for the Information ministry headed by a seasoned journalist to fail to win the accolade is shameful if not rudiculous If you are the focal point on the implementing of the ATI and fail the peimary test then you have a serious problem

Mkanda Gudu
Mkanda Gudu
8 months ago
Reply to  William Chirwa

The study conducted in June when the socalled Journalist of the Minister was not yet one. Sometimes its good to follow through the thread and just spew what you don’t understand.

David Mweso
David Mweso
8 months ago
Reply to  William Chirwa

Thank God we don’t have so many people like Mr Chirwa in Malawi.

Mufalisi
Mufalisi
8 months ago

MEC under Justice Chifundo Kachale not that old lady who imposed Peter Mutharika on us.

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