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    HomeNewsPoliticsIn the steps of Kenya, Malawi nullifies 2019 elections over irregularities

    In the steps of Kenya, Malawi nullifies 2019 elections over irregularities

    Malawi’s general election took place on 21 May 2019 to elect the President, National Assembly and Local government Councillors. Even after the re-election; President Peter Mutharika’s party remains the largest in the National Assembly of Malawi.

    It is the first time Malawi has legally annulled elections, since getting independence from Britain 1964.

    Demonstrations

    Lazarus Chakwera and Saulos Chilima brought up the challenge. There have been anti-government protests since the election. As a result; some of these protests, have resulted in destruction of properties and the death of two people. This is to say; during the demonstration, a police officer and a civilian were both killed.

    Malawi’s Human Rights Commission (HRC); said that police officers; raped and took advantage of the women in the presence of their children, during the demonstration. On the other hand; the military has taken over to bringing order in the streets as the police are unfair and unjust.

    Election irregularities

    President Peter Mutharika; won by a 38.65 of the votes, as a result, Lazarus Chakwera came second and Saulos Chilima finished third. Mr Chakwera claims to have won the elections with a 35.4%. Lawyers of the losing candidates said that a correction fluid was used on the tallying forms. The Lawyer added that the changes happened after the party agents signed the papers.

    The lawyers said that some polling stations also sent the wrong results to the tallying center. However the evidence pointed to a flawed mathematical error, not a vast number of mistakes were found.

    Malawi’s Anti-corruption Body arrested a businessman on bribe allegations. The top businessman allegedly bribed senior judges to rule in favour of Peter Mutharika.

    Re-election

    The court said that the new elections would be within five months; which is roughly 150 days. The five judge panel made a unanimous decision. Justice Healey Potani; the lead judge said that the fresh elections should be according to the law, which is what will dictate the direction that the country takes.

    The US assistant secretary of the state for Africa; tweeted that all Malawians should respect the court’s decision and follow the constitution and electoral laws.

    Malawi is the second nation after Kenya, to cancel elections following irregularities.

    Human Rights Defenders Coalition (HRDC); has asked Jane Ansah, Malawi electoral commission chairperson to step down. They issued the demand after the court’s fresh election judgment. HRDC added that they are ready to protest if the chairperson, Jane Ansah does not step down.

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