E-mail: ceo@mec.org.mw    |    Phone: (265) 1 822 033    |    Fax: (265) 1 821 846

MEC Holds Public Lecture at Mzuzu University

Posted by: Stanford Bonongwe
Category: News Updates

MEC Holds Public Lecture at Mzuzu University.

On Friday, February 16, 2024, the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) held an inaugural public lecture at Mzuzu University. The event aimed to promote democratic participation among the public, with a particular emphasis on engaging young people.

the Chairman of the MEC and a High Court judge, Justice Dr. Chifundo Kachale, presented the lecture with a theme, “Democracy, Law Reform, and Preparation for the 2025 General Elections.”

The public lecture covered various topics, including the interplay between democracy and elections, youth engagement in politics, the Commission’s functions and duties, recent legislative reforms, inclusivity in elections (including women, youth, and persons with disabilities), and an overview of the preparedness and schedule for the 2025 General Election.

Speaking at the opening of the lecture, Mzuzu University’s Vice Chancellor, Professor Wales Singini, emphasized the significance of the lecture in fostering a democratic culture among Malawians.

Furthermore, Professor Singini expressed gratitude to the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) for selecting the University as the inaugural host for this series of public lectures that will be held ahead of the General Election.

In his address, the MEC Chairman lamented the low participation of young people in elections despite their significant presence in the nation’s demographics.

Justice Dr. Kachale noted that the realm of inclusive elections, promise clashes with reality. Despite high registration, women, youth, and persons with disabilities remain on the sidelines. Efforts fall short as systemic barriers persist.

The MEC Chairman argued that political parties must lead the charge, by fostering inclusivity within their ranks as true change requires agency from marginalized groups.

On the steps that the Commission has taken in preparation for the 2025 General Elections, the MEC Chairman intimated that the Commission’s 2025 General Election preparations align with international standards, viewing elections as a multifaceted process.

Emphasizing the academia’s crucial role in bolstering free, fair, and credible elections, Justice Dr. Kachale, addressing a diverse audience of scholars, policymakers, and civil society representatives, highlighted academia’s multifaceted contributions to electoral integrity.

He underscored the importance of rigorous research and analysis conducted by academics, providing vital insights for policymakers and electoral commissions.

Moreover, he emphasized academia’s role in offering evidence-based policy recommendations to address electoral challenges and promote inclusivity. Capacity building emerged as another key aspect, with academics imparting essential training to electoral stakeholders.

Additionally, Justice Kachale stressed academia’s responsibility in public education and awareness-raising efforts, fostering a culture of civic participation and democratic values.

Furthermore, he highlighted academia’s role in monitoring and evaluating elections, ensuring transparency and accountability. He also emphasized academia’s potential to drive innovation in electoral technologies, advancing voter registration, administration, and transparency.

At the close of the lecture, there was a Questions and Answers sessions where participants, both physically and virtually present were given an opportunity to engage with the substance of the lecture by asking questions.

The MEC intends to continue holding such public lectures in universities across the country to inculcate a culture of democracy and participation as the country gears for the September 2025 General Election.

 **A transcript of the Chairman’s public lecture is available here, and the live recording can also be found on the MEC Facebook page https://web.facebook.com/Mwelectoralcommission/videos/1932621243807363.

Leave a Reply