A political expert has doubted the 20 people who collected the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) nomination papers will all be eligible to battle it out for the State House job.
Henry Chingaipe said past experiences show that many people collect the papers but fewer returns them to the pollster.
“People should not be alarmed with the figure, very few of them will return the nomination papers and some of them who will return might be disqualified for one reason or another,” said Chingaipe.
Out of the 20 people who have collected the presidential nomination papers, only three are women whilst seven will stand as independent presidential candidates.
“MEC will only receive valid papers. These are supposed to get 10 valid signatures from each district for them to qualify. This is not easy, some of them might not be able to do that.
“They have to pay K2 million. This is not a small amount of money by any means. Some of them might not have the money to pay as nomination fee. Others just wanted to get fame, they might not be serious,” he said.
In addition, Chingaipe said, the collection of the nomination papers is free and MEC does not ask you whether you want to participate in the presidential race or not.
“We should not be excited so much about this, only a few will make it on the ballot paper,” he said.
Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) said out of the 20 who have collected the forms ahead of presentation scheduled for between February 4 and 8, 12 aspirants are representing political parties, seven are independent candidates and one is representing a coalition.
The two aspirants have joined incumbent President Peter Mutharika of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Lazarus Chakwera (Malawi Congress Party), Joyce Banda (People’s Party), serving Vice-President Saulos Chilima (UTM), Atupele Muluzi (United Democratic Front), Enock Chihana (Alliance for Democracy) and John Chisi of Umodzi Party.
Others are former vice-president Cassim Chilumpha leading Tikonze People’s Movement—a coalition of six minor political parties, Chris Daza of Democratic People’s Congress, Peter Kuwani (Mbakuwaku Movement for Development), Chimbuna Belekiah (United Independence Party), Sally Kumwenda Yadwad (Leadership with Compassion) and Loudon Malingamoyo Phiri of National Salvation Front.
Henry Jailos Mdebwe, Smart Swira, Florence Fulayi, Rhodrick Makhambera Pastor Baxter Boyd Natulu, Ras Chikomeni David Chirwa and Reverend D.H. Kaliya complete the list of independent aspirants.
Each aspirant is expected to pay K2 million to participate in the election
Chingaioe said the real battle remains among Mutharika, Chakwera, Chilima, Muluzi and Banda.Follow and Subscribe Nyasa TV :