The Malawi Electoral Commission will hold public hearings from 11 April to 23 May, 2022 across the country to get feedback from the public on the preliminary boundaries for wards and constituencies.
The Commission released this information during a press briefing on Saturday, 9 April, 2022 addressed by Commissioner Olivia Mchaju Liwewe (Chairperson of the Electoral Services Committee) and Commissioner Francis Lazalo Kasaila (Chairperson of the Media, Civic and Voter Education Committee).
In her speech, Commissioner Liwewe announced that attendance to the public hearings would be by invitation and expected guests included Members of Parliament, Ward councillors, Political parties, Traditional Authorities, Civil society leaders including those representing women, the youth, and people with disabilities.
“During the public hearings, the preliminary maps will be once more displayed for the last time for stakeholders to view. Thereafter, all stakeholders present will be given an opportunity to give their final feedback on the preliminary maps for the Commission to consider when drawing the final maps” she said.
The Commissioner added that the public hearings would also offer the Commission the opportunity to present issues that were received during the public viewing so that they can be addressed at the same time with the issues that will arise during the public hearings.
During the public hearings, the Commission is also expected to get final feedback from the people on the naming of constituencies and wards.
“The Commission had asked stakeholders to propose names for the re-drawn constituencies and wards. In some areas the names were proposed but in others they were not.
“The Commission will not suggest names of constituencies and wards for the stakeholders but where they do not come up with the names, the Commission will revert to using geographical cardinal points as names such as North, South and East as the case may be,” she explained.
The Commissioner also stated that after the public hearings the Commission would not allow anyone to bring their views for further consideration.
“The Commission is confident that it has taken all necessary steps to ensure that the process was transparent and conducted in a prudent manner.
All concerned individuals and organisations are, therefore, being informed that the last opportunity for raising any issues and views will be during the public hearing meeting in their respective councils,” she said.
The full schedule of the public hearings can be accessed here