On Wednesday, 7 October, 2021 the Malawi Electoral Commission presented reports for the Tripartite Elections held on 21 May 2019 and Fresh Presidential Elections held on 23 June, 2020 to the State President, Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera.
In his presentation remarks, MEC Chairman, Justice Dr Chifundo Kachale said although the Commission was an independent institution, it had a duty to be accountable on how it conducted or discharged its functions.
“The reports that the Commission is presenting to you, Your Excellency, give details and an account on the management of the entire process of two elections starting from voter registration up to results management and announcement,” he said.
Justice Kachale reaffirmed the commitment of the Commission towards holding elections that are free, fair and credible to the satisfaction of all stakeholders.
“The Commission will remain impartial, nonpartisan and professional in the execution of its mandate,” he stated.
The MEC Chairman said there have been by-elections in 13 constituencies and five wards since May 2019 and none of these by-elections have been successfully challenged in court.
The MEC chairman also expressed gratefulness to the government for being responsive and providing financial support timely for running electoral activities.
“The country is facing challenges especially with the Covid-19 pandemic which has put so much stress to the economy. However, despite the pressure that has been exerted on the economy the government has always gleaned resources to ensure that electoral activities are implemented on time. We are very grateful for this,” he said.
In his remarks, State President Dr Lazarus McCarthy Chakwera assured the Commission of the government support in terms of finances and resources for it to continue discharging its mandate.
The State President also commended the Commission for its efforts in the past 18 months in correcting constitutional irregularities experienced in past elections.
“When an institution acts independently, follows the law to deliver its mandate, Malawians will start to develop trust in it and that does not only consolidate our democracy but also institutional trust.
The President urged the Commission to follow up on its officers that neglect or abuse their mandate in the course of duty.
Section 6(1) of the Electoral Commission Act says “Every individual member and employee of the Commission shall perform the functions and exercise the powers provided for in this Act independently of the direction or interference of:
Provided that for the purpose only of accountability the Commission shall be answerable, and report directly, to the President on the overall fulfilment of the functions and powers of the Commission.