BLANTYRE-(MaraviPost)—Legal Affairs Committee of Parliament has advised the Malawi Electoral Commission to work on the country holding fresh presidential election on June 23 while they are waiting to put the law in place for the election date.
Speaking on the sidelines of a meeting that the committee had with MEC Chairperson, Justice Dr. Jane Ansah, and Attorney General, Kalekeni Kaphale today, the committee’s chairperson, Kezzie Msukwa, says they will not completely follow the advice of the Attorney General to have ‘genuine election’ as, he said, the AG is compromised in his stand, having represented MEC in the court case in which the Constitutional Court nullified the presidential poll.
On the bills that President Peter Mutharika rejected, Msukwa says the meeting has agreed that only pieces of the legislation guiding a possible run-off and election date should be tabled and that the rest should be tabled after elections when the country will be politically stable.
Attorney General Kalekeni Kaphale has said they haven’t agreed on any date for the fresh election but as Attorney General, he has advised the members of the legal committee that the mandate to choose a date lies in the hands of Parliament.
MEC, during a meeting with the National Elections Consultative Forum (NECOF) which comprises all election stakeholders in the country last week, announced that in view of the Supreme Court’s ruling on May 8 the Commission had revised the fresh presidential election date to June 23 from July 2.
Ansah said with the Supreme Court’s clarification on the date for fresh election the Commission found June 23 to be an appropriate date for the poll.
“The Supreme Court upheld the fresh election and that it should be conducted within the 150 days from Feb. 3 as per the High Court ruling,” said Ansah.
However, the MEC Chairperson said the date was tentative and that the full responsibility of setting the date for the election lies in the hands of Parliament.
Incumbent president Peter Mutharika is going to face opposition leader, Lazarus Chakwera, in the fresh election and the two opponents have rolled out a stiff campaign across the country to woo the electorate.