The Malawi Electoral Commission (Mec) has returned to the Zimbabwe Electoral Commission the gas lamps and tents it borrowed to use for the 20th May Tripartite Elections.

The Mec Chairman,  Justice Maxon Mbendera, SC officially handed over the items to Deputy Chairperson of the ZEC, Commissioner Joyce Laetitia Kazembe on Wednesday, October 15, 2014 in Harare, Zimbabwe.

In his handover speech Justice Mbndera SC said MEC appreciated ZEC’s support and that this would go a long way to cement the good relationship that exists between the two electoral management bodies.

The MEC chairman said the assistance was meaningful and that Malawi Electoral Commission made maximum use of the equipment.

“We are grateful that the ZEC accepted to lend us the equipment. Our elections were a success because of your support. The tents were used in centres with no permanent structures like those on bare grounds.

“Our staff in such centres had proper shelter and equipment was well protected because of the tents. The lamps helped because this time around we did not have any excuses that in some centers there was no proper lighting,” he said.

 in her remarks, Commissioner Joyce Laetitia Kazembe said they were proud to have been associated with Malawi's tripartite polls through the provision of gas lamps and tents adding that this one collaboration has further cemented the bond which has always existed between the two countries since the Federation of Rhodesia and Nyasaland.

She also mentioned that her commission was shocked to learn of the fire that destroyed part of the election equipment and materials.

“We were shocked to learn of the fire that destroyed some of your election materials in the warehouses, after the elections. We were relieved that there were no casualties.

“We must admit, though, that we did speculate as to whether any of our equipment had suffered the fate of that fire. We were, however, relieved when the first truck loads returning the items were crossing the border,” she said.

 She hoped that Malawi and Zimbabwe will continue to share their experiences and resources towards the advancement of home grown democracy in general and democratic elections in particular not only in the respective countries but in the region and the continent at large.