Namasasu (L) and Msungama (R)

LILONGWE-(MaraviPost)-The Malawi Supreme Court of Appeals order for the re-run of the Lilongwe City South East Constituency parliamentary elections has put the Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) in a fix to source funds for the exercise.

Apart from seeking funding, the Mec is also concerned if the modality of electoral laws will allow it conduct the re-run as demanded by the court.

But electoral stakeholders and opposition political parties have challenged the electoral body to find the funds and consult widely for the exercise to take place.

In a press statement released on Tuesday and made available to The Maravi Post, Mec while welcoming the court’s order, said it is putting in place measures to hold the re-run as soon as possible.

The electoral body says it respects the ruling after it declared Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) candidate Bantly Namasasu winner against Malawi Congress Party (MCP) candidate Ulemu Msungama, who challenged the 2014 tripartite elections results.

The commission notes that the exercise will be the first in the electoral history of the country, saying holding of the election involves the engagement of several public offices and holding the re-run will depend on how fast the other institutions can assist to the process.

“Stakeholders should be assured that it has always been in the interest of the commission to fill up vacancies once they arise as soon as possible so people in constituencies and wards continue to enjoy representation in Parliament and councils respectively.

“The commission is appealing for patience, understanding, and support from all electoral stakeholders in this process as has always been in the case”, reads the statement signed by Thandie Nkovole, Mec’s Acting Chief Elections Officer.

Malawi Electoral Support Network (Mesn) Chairperson Steven Duwa has however advised the Mec to consult the Attorney-General on electoral laws and submit its budget to the treasury for the re-run.

All major opposition political parties including United Democratic Front (UDF), People’ Party (PP), and MCP have quashed the commission’s complaint of lack funds for the exercise.

There were seven candidates including three independents who competed in the constituency in the 2014 polls.

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