By Blackson Mkupatira
Mulanje, September 3, Mana: Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC), on Wednesday, begun a three-day review of polling procedures manual and forms in response to 2019 Presidential case court ruling.
MEC is responding to the court ruling on 2019 Presidential case which ordered the electoral body to review some of its procedures.
MEC Commissioner Steve Duwa made the remarks at Hapuwani Village Lodge in Mulanje during a review meeting.
“As you might be aware, the Presidential Elections case subjected the electoral process to an intense scrutiny where the courts faulted the Commission on a number of issues including the existence of Constituency Tally Centers and use of correction fluid that created room for suspicion and doubt,” Duwa said.
MEC is, therefore, reviewing polling procedures manual and forms associated with the parliamentary elections polling process for credibility of the elections and as such win public trust in the next elections.
“MEC is reviewing the polling procedures manual and forms so that come 2024 or 2025 we have credible elections,” added Duwa who is also MEC Media, Civic and Voter Registration Chairperson.
The meeting also intends to simplify the electoral forms so that they can be better understood by users.
Duwa said their complexities is what created room for mistakes.
“These forms are handled by people of varying skills, knowledge and abilities and while our minds are fresh, we need to look for ways to simplify them as much as we can so that we do not face the challenges we encountered in the 2019 Tripartite Elections,” he added.
He, therefore, commended International Foundation for Electoral Systems (IFES) for financial and technical support towards the workshop saying this support is timely.
On his part, IFES Officer for Malawi, Martin Chiphwanya, commended MEC’s handling of the June 23, 2020 Fresh Presidential Elections saying the results were fair and credible.
He said IFES will continue to work with MEC to resolve some of the challenges encountered during the previous two elections.
“We are now thinking on how best we can provide technical and financial support to MEC ahead of the 2024/2025 Elections so that we are not faced with the same challenges” he said.
The Malawi Electoral Commission-MEC officials across the country are attending the Mulanje meeting.