On Tuesday, Saulos Chilima underwent further gruelling cross-examination at the hands of Attorney General Kalekepheni Kaphale in the ongoing election case in the Constitutional Court.
At the end of the day, Malawians who are following the case on the radios are wondering why Chilima petitioned the court while he does not have evidence.
In the examination, Chilima failed to show any tippexing that was fraudulent or that affected any candidates’ valid vote count.
Interestingly, Chilima and MCP president Lazarus Chakwera built their petition largely on the use of Tippex. This was one of the irregularities they alleged tipped the election results in the favour of President Peter Mutharika.
Chilima said in court that Tippex was not used to alter the results of the election but for correction of arithmetic errors.
He also failed to show any result on a duplicate form as invalid or inaccurate or provide any alternative results.
At one point, Chilima looked confused and exhausted with Kaphale’s questioning such that he admitted he did not have answers to some of Kaphale’s questions.
“I do not have answers to most of your questions because I did not expect that you would ask such questions. I can not create answers that I do not have,” he told Kaphale who is representing the Malawi Electoral Commission in the case.
The Attorney General asked Chilima why he did not confer with hs party’s monitors since June when he filed the petition.
Kaphale took Chilima through the tally sheets his party’s monitors signed for. None of the forms Chilima brought to court showed any UTM monitor had disapproved any result.
The case is all about what the monitors signed for and whether any has come forward to complain about any of the results they signed for or to claim their signatures were forged. None has done so for both Chilima and Chakwera.
With the candidate valid vote count not having been challenged, it is difficult to imagine how Chilima and Chakwera will prove that any so-called irregularity affected the result of the election.
In the cross examination on Monday, Kaphale also shredded six of Chilima’s six other allegations. He ended up admitting that they could not have affected the results of the elections.
Chilima’s failure to provide evidence to justify his petition is causing discomfort in the rank and file of the MCP.
The party’s followers are pouring their frustration and fear on social media, accusing Chilima of betraying them and weakening their consolidated petition.
It was Chilima who first filed his petition calling for the nullification of the election. Chakwera followed suit. The High Court consolidated the two cases and referred them to the Constitutional Court.
Kaphale is expected to wind up cross-examining Chilima on Wednesday.