Mzuzu City Council asks parties to mobile people  to register in voters’ roll

The Mzuzu City Council has asked political parties in the city to collaboratively conduct voter civic education activities  in a bid to attain a large turn up of the eligible electorate  in  phase   eight  of the voter registration exercise.

Mzuzu City Council CEO Mcloud Kadam’manja: We beleive this initiative will force the residents to move

Phase eight of the Malawi Electoral Commission-led Biometric Voter Registration exercise is slated   to run from October 27  to November 9, 2018  in Mzuzu,   NkhataBay, Chitipa, Karonga  and Rumphi Districts.

Dr  Macloud Kadam’manja Chief  Executive Officer of the Mzuzu City Council said this is an interview on Monday.

“We want to tell  political parties that they have a duty to  sensitize the masses so that many eligible voters  should  turn out and vote in the coming voter registration exercise  and to urge them to  work as a team  in sensitizing  the  people of Mzuzu .

“We have lined up several activities. We  met  with the  electoral stakeholders. We started with the District Elections Supervisory Team and the Multi-Party Liaison Committee to brief them on the electoral calendar and to see how we could reduce the  conflicts and other challenges that we faced in 2014 and  to see how we could handle the issues that are arising now,”  said Dr Kadam’manja.

The calls from the Mzuzu City CEO are following challenges that marred the voter registration and other electoral process in the run up to the 2014 Tripartite Elections.

And  NICE  Trust District Civic Education Officer for Mzuzu  and Mzimba North Wisdom Zunguzungu Nyirenda has assured electoral stakeholders that  NICE would take a lead role in ensuring that political parties  in Mzuzu  conduct their voter civic education and other electoral activities in united  and  peaceful manner.

“NICE will be in the fore front  to ensure that we are all working as a District, to ensure that no one is left behind. We are looking at a number of elements in working with different stakeholders, we are looking at conflicts. Conflicts come because everyone  is working independently but when they are working in a collaborative manner, the tension is always avoided  and the friction between parties is always resolved before they start.

“Our goal is to make sure that each party wishing to field candidates for  the 2019  Tripartite Elections is engaged and we  provide them with all the training that they need in the electoral processes,” Nyirenda said.

He added that NICE is currently conducting a series of trainings targeting civic education volunteers and that soon the Trust will train MEC voter civic education  officers and  MEC Stringers in Mzimba North and Mzuzu City.

Meanwhile, phase one of the  voter registration exercise  which covered  Kasungu District, Kasungu Municipality, Salima and Dedza Districts ended on July 9 with an assurance from MEC that the Electoral Body is addressing views that there could have been a low  registration turn up in these Districts as compared to the 2014 voter registration.

According to MEC, this year’s voter registration exercise is expected to register more than 9 million eligible voters during the eight phases of the Biometric Voter Registration exercise  as compared to  the 2013 voter registration exercise where only 7.5 million voters  were registered through the  old  registration system.

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