Treasury has released K400 million for Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) to hire 400 trucks for the transportation of election materials before and after the May 21 Tripartite Elections.
This comes amid reports of MEC facing a shortage of about 450 trucks for distribution of election materials nationwide ahead of the polls.
MEC chief elections officer Sam Alfandika said in an interview yesterday Treasury approved the proposed budget for the hiring of the vehicles for the distribution exercise scheduled to start next Thursday.
He said: “Our major worry was transportation, but now everything is set. We will only hire trucks this time around as station wagons will be made available from ministries, departments and agencies. We are ready and committed to the smooth running of the May 21 polls.”
According to Alfandika, printing of ballot papers has been completed and they are expected to arrive in the country between May 13 and 14 and distribution of non-sensitive polling materials will start thereafter.
On announcement of results, he said the results will be known before the end of eight days as per constitutional requirement.
“We are not stopping anybody from announcing unofficial results but at the end of the day, the nation should know that only MEC will announce credible results,” Alfandika said.
He assured that MEC has invested heavily in the police and the Malawi Defence Force and it expects the security institutions to play their role in terms of managing the political environment and ensuring that there is peace.
Alfandika also hailed the faith groups for organising special prayers aimed at ensuring a peaceful electoral environment.
Earlier this week, MEC commissioner Jean Mathanga told The Nation, the electoral body requires 2 140 vehicles out of which 600 should be trucks for material distribution exercise.
The commissioner said government had earlier provided 95 trucks, which means the electoral body needed to hire the remaining trucks.
Mathanga, who chairs MEC electoral services committee, said there was need for the commission to outsource the remaining trucks from service providers with funding from the government and United Nations Development Programme (UNDP).