Opposition Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) yesterday welcomed Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) decision to set January 30 as the new date for Lilongwe South Constituency by-election.
The commission has also announced that it will hold local government by-election in Liwawadzi Ward in Balaka North on March 5.
MEC postponed Lilongwe South Constituency by-election originally scheduled for November 5 2019 due to volatile political environment in the aftermath of the May 21 Tripartite Elections and complaints lodged by stakeholders, including DPP candidate for the constituency, Frank Mazizi.
In an interview yesterday, DPP secretary general Greselder Jeffrey said her party is ready for the polls.
“We were only waiting for the date to be announced,” she said. “The ruling party is happy that people will now have a chance to vote for their candidates.”
On his part, MCP director of elections Elias Chakwera said the by-elections are long overdue.
In two separate statements released on Thursday, the commission indicated that the decision to hold the by-elections was reached at after consultations with all electoral stakeholders.
Statements signed by MEC chief elections officer(CEO) Sam Alfandika said official campaign period for the Lilongwe South by-election will close on January 28 whereas results of the elections are expected to be announced on January 31.
The by-election in Liwawadzi Ward, on the other hand, follows the death of Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) councillor, Thomson Thomas Bwanali on October 25 last year.
The poll was initially set for November 5, but was postponed due to a volatile political environment that ensued few days before the election.
Parliamentary elections in Lilongwe South were deferred during the May 21 Tripartite Elections following the death of UTM candidate Agnes Penemulungu.