United Democratic Front (UDF) has added its voice to the call of the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) that the voters roll should be verified by an independent body, arguing the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) cannot be trusted due to irregularities faced in the registration exercise.
UDF Secretary-General Kandi Padambo speaking at a rally the party president Atupele Muluzi address in Ndirabde, Blantyre on Sunday, said the party wants the voters roll to be publicised to allow stakeholders access it and rectify all possible anomalies now.
He said the Electoral calendar as released by MEC does not give stakeholders ample time to clean the voters roll.
“The registration exercise has been riddled with all sorts of challenges emanating from incompetency on the party of data collecting clerks and that has to be rectified now and not in March next year, ” said Padambo.
However, he was quick to say that the UDF party has confidence in the current commission.
MCP spokesperson Jessie Kabwila said recently that there are a number of shortfalls, some of which MEC has ignored to handle during the registration exercise, saying it is difficult to take the voters roll as a true reflection of the exercise.
She said failure to crosscheck the figures would lead to rigging of elections, arguing rigging starts before voting.
“The elections will be better if the voter roll is independently verified. Why is it that the projections are way below the outcome? MEC can’t be trusted on this,” said Kabwila.
But People’s Party (PP) spokesperson Ken Msonda argued that MEC has handled the exercise professionally and there is no need to verify the figures.