Illegal MEC Presided Over Malawi’s Fresh Presidential Elections- Kenyatta Nyirenda


High Court Judge Kenyatta Nyirenda has nullified the appointment of Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) Commissioners which presided over court sanctioned June fresh presidential elections.

Kenyatta made the nullification after the governing Malawi Congress Party (MCP) dragged President Lazarus Chakwera to court over the appointment of the commissioners.

MCP argued that appointment of four Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) commissioners namely Arthur Nanthulu, Steve Duwa, Linda Kunje and Jean Mathanga was illegal.

The argument centred on Section 4 of the amended Electoral Commission Act of 2017 which empowers parties that obtain one-tenth of the parliamentary seats submit to the president a minimum of three nominees.

In his ruling on Wednesday, Judge Nyirenda said the commissioners were not duly appointed by the former President Professor Peter Mutharika.

According to Nyirenda, the law compelled the President to appoint three commissioners each from MCP and DPP but Mutharika appointed four from DPP and two from MCP.

Nyirenda has since maintained MCP commissioners Anthony Mukumbwa and Olivia Liwewe while DPP has been ordred to submit new names.   

Recently, Attorney General (AG) Chikosa Silungwe advised Secretary to the President and Cabinet Zangazanga Chikhosi that maintaining the composition of the current MEC commission would be “neater and mature political pragmatism.”

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