Police say they have arrested 17 people nationwide in relation to election-related cases in the aftermath of Tuesday’s tripartite elections.
Confirming the development in an interview yesterday, National Police spokesperson James Kadadzera said they have recorded nine incidents, including voting for more than once, tampering with election materials, assault of a parliamentary candidate in Nsanje, conduct likely to cause a breach of peace, inducing voters to vote for or against a political party and attempt to vote twice.
“In addition to those cases, we have also arrested 11 people in Chitipa for disturbing the regular function of a polling station, bringing the number of arrested people to 17,” he said.
On reports that some political party followers have started celebrating victory before the Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has announced results of the elections, Kadadzera gave a staunch warning against such behaviour, saying it is against the Presidential and Parliamentary Elections Act.
“The nation should be warned that it is against the law to celebrate victory before the announcement of official results. Our advice to the winners is that they should celebrate responsibly and losers should honourably concede defeat,” added Kadadzera.
MEC chairperson Jane Ansah on Tuesday confirmed receiving reports of illegal conduct in some polling centres on the polling day.
She singled out an incident which happened in Mzimba at Davie Primary School where a presiding officer, a teacher, gave a voter an already marked ballot paper. The teacher was fired and later arrested by the police.
In Kasungu, it was reported that police arrested three women for voting without being registered.
According to Kasungu Police spokesperson Harry Namwaza, the three were arrested at Mwimba Primary School polling station in Kasungu West Constituency. The three women posed as monitors.