By Richard Kayenda
MZUZU-(MaraviPost)—Pollster, Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC), on Saturday launched the first phase of voter registration exercise for fresh presidential election with a low turnout of new registrants in many centres, Maravi Post has established.
A snapshot survey Maravi Post conducted in districts like Chitipa, Karonga and Salima revealed that very few people were patronizing the centres to get registered.
However, Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) through its Director of Communication, Sangwani Mwafulirwa, said the exercise has begun on a good note considering that the first phase is only targeting new registrants.
“This registration is for everyone who has turned 18 or will turn 18 by the 7th of June or never registered in the tripartite elections that we have had in May 2019. But if they registered, they don’t need to register again, neither do they need to go verify their names again.
“Malawi Electoral Commission is going to open the centres after the voter registration exercise for people to verify their details,” said Mwafulirwa.
In Salima the exercise started with some operational hitches as drivers MEC has recruited were reluctant to ferry personnel and materials to the designated centres because of low allowances.
The country will go to fresh presidential polls on July 2 this year after the Constitutional Court nullified the May 2019 election results due to numerous irregularities.
Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and UTM have been calling for resignation of MEC Chairperson Jane Ansah and all commissioners, arguing they are not competent to administer the forthcoming polls.