Malawi election at a glance
Accreditation by MEC(Malawi Electoral Commission)
Our organization PAN AFRICAN WOMEN PROJECTS was accredited and invited as one of the INTERNATIONAL OBSERVER GROUP by MALAWI ELECTORAL COMMISSION (MEC) to observe the 21śt May,2019 Malawi Tripartite Election.
Our Observation Mission arrived into the capital Lilongwe on the 8th of May,2019 and on the 14th of May,2019 we held a SENSITIZATION WORKSHOP in partnership with Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) at Golden Peacock Hotel and Resort in Lilongwe to sensitize the stakeholders (MEC MALAWI ELECTORAL COMMISSION ,SECURITY OPERATIVES,MEDIA,YOUTH ASSOCIATIONS,WOMEN GROUPS,FAITH BASE ORGANISATIONS, MEMBERS OF POLITICAL PARTIES ,TRADITIONAL SOCIETY , AND CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANISATIONS ).
During the workshop various speakers exposed and condemned all forms of electoral violence and manipulations during election and strongly admonished the stakeholders and indeed the electorate to strictly adhere to the globally accepted tenets of democracy.
Futhermore, the resource persons also encouraged the electorate to vote peacefully and shun Vote Buying, Rigging,Intimidation, Thuggery and any form of political violence before,during and after the elections.
Above all,the resource persons strongly appealed to the respective candidates in the election to conduct themselves in compliance with the electoral laws of Malawi in other to sustain peaceful atmosphere, before,during and after the elections.They also appealed to the potential winners of the said election to be magnanimous in victory and the losers to be gallant in defeat.
We observed that polls commenced on the 21st May, 2019 at nearly every Polling centre we visited between 0600 hours to 0700 hours for the Malawi Tripartite Election .
Voters queued anxiously in large numbers to cast their votes, and the turn up was very impressive.
Although many Polling Centres had a peaceful electoral process it is also on record by some political parties agents and civil society organisation s that a few Polling Centres experienced Vote Buying ,Intimidation and Rigging .
The Tally Centre was open on the 21st May,2019 at the Comesa House in Blantyre were we also observed a professional display of result collation and updates to all stakeholders at intervals by the Malawi Electoral Commission led by the Chairperson Justice Jane Ansah.
DECLARATION OF RESULT
Proffessor Peter Mutharika the candidate of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP)was declared winner of the May 21 presidential poll after a court vacated an injunction placed on the Malawi Electoral Commission, MEC.
The two main opposition candidates had lodged judicial complaints of electoral irregularities .
Mutharika secured a narrow margin of victory over the opposition candidate Dr. Lazarus Chakwera of the Malawi Congress Party (MCP). The final records indicated that Prof.Peter Mutharika got 1,940,709 (38.57%) with Dr. Lazarus Chakwera getting 1,781,740 (35.41%). Former VP Dr. Saulos Chilima got 1.018,369(20.24).
We observed that at all Polling Centres we visited they were heavy presence of Police men.
We observed a voter’s roll of 6,859,570 persons (80% of eligible voting population); 3,818,578 female (56%) and 3,045,992 male (44%) voters. The number of registered voters for the 2014 polls was 7.5 million. The 2019 register shows a major decline from the 2019 figure. A total of 3, 729, 588 (54.37%) registrants are youth (aged between 18 and 35 years).
Although Malawi Government had passed the Gender Equality Act (2013), women continue to be significantly underrepresented at all levels of elected government as well as in nominations by parties at the Presidential, Parliamentary and Local government levels. Only 22% of the nominees for parliamentary seats and 23% of the local government candidates are women. This is in a context where there are 3,813,578 women and 3,045,992 men registered to vote in the 2019 elections.
Women participation in this past Malawi 2019 Tripartite Election is a concern to our organisation especially when Malawi had produced in 2012 to 2014 the second and powerful Female President in Africa. Also, observed for the legislative elections, 1,329 candidates (295 women and 1034 men) had their nominations confirmed. For the Local Government elections, 2709 nominees were confirmed (645 women and 2,064 men).
The Malawi 2019 Tripartite Election though free, peaceful and was expected to be in tandem with international best standard practices but was indeed dramatic and left more to be desired in terms of credible electoral processes.
.Our Final Report will be forwarded with recommendations to the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC)i within 60days.
Pan African Women Projects (PAWP) commend the Malawi Electoral Commission for their practical commitment and amazing steadfastness to entrenching laudable and enduring democracy in Malawi vis a vis Africa.
We commend the Malawi Electoral Commission(MEC) and indeed the government of Malawi for the privilege accorded us (PAN AFRICAN WOMEN PROJECTS ) to observe the Malawi 2019 election, we are indeed grateful.