National Assembly confirms boundary review report
The National Assembly on 18 November 2022 approved the boundary report that was submitted by the Malawi Electoral Commission through the Minister of Justice and Constitutional Affairs on 7 November 2022.
The report was a culmination of the boundary review activities conducted by the Commission from April 2021 to July 2022 and involved the Commission going to councils and holding meetings with relevant stakeholders that included party leaders, Members of Parliament, Traditional and faith leaders and civil society organisations.
The approved boundaries which, will be used for the 2025 elections, will see the seats of Members of Parliament increase from 193 to 229 and Ward councillors will move from 462 to 509 wards.
In determining the number of constituencies, the Commission was guided by the requirement of the Constitution that the process must be impartial and that constituencies must contain approximately equal number of voters eligible to register to vote subject to considerations of population density, ease of communication, geographical features and existing administrative boundaries.
The Commission used the projected population of people eligible to register to vote for the 2025 General Elections, which was provided by the National Statistical Office (NSO) which is mandated by the National Statistics Act, 2013 as a body responsible for the collection, compilation, analysis, abstraction, publication and dissemination of statistical information in Malawi. According to the NSO, the national population of voters eligible to register to vote in 2025 is projected to be 10,957,490.
Confirmation of constituency boundaries is a requirement of Section 76 (5) (b) of the Constitution which stipulates that the National Assembly shall confirm all determinations by the Commission with regard to the drawing up of constituency boundaries but may not alter the boundaries of any constituency, except upon the recommendation of the Commission.
Now that the report has been confirmed the Commission will proceed to publish in the gazette the new constituency boundaries and also embark on an exercise of identifying and allocating registration and voting centres.
Malawi had last review constituency boundaries in 1998. The full report of the boundary review process can be downloaded here.