The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has admitted being under pressure to meet its deadline in releasing the presidential election results within the stipulated eight-day period.
MEC chairperson Jane Ansah said this at Comesa Hall in Blantyre on Sunday when giving an update on determination of results and complaints handling.
She, however, said the electoral body is not under any pressure from political parties, leaders or any other external forces.
Said Ansah: “Malawians are not depending on me but the commission, and we are not under any pressure, no. Our only pressure, however, is to meet the target in releasing results within the eight-day period and that is why you see us working day and night.”
MEC is mandated by law to release all election results within eight days, but the commission’s hands are currently tied by an injunction that Malawi Congress Party (MCP) obtained restraining the commission from releasing the presidential election results, citing anomalies.
But Ansah, a judge of the Malawi Supreme Court of Appeal, told the press and other stakeholders gathered at the main tally centre that MEC will only act upon what transpires from the court.
On cases of violence perpetrated by political party supporters, Ansah reiterated her call to party leaders that they should appeal to their members to remain calm and peaceful.
Both MCP and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) have since urged their followers to remain calm and avoid violence as they await the release of the results.
MCP secretary general Eisenhower Mkaka said in an interview that as much as their supporters have every right to demonstrate as per the Constitution, they should not do so through violence.
On the other hand, DPP publicity secretary Nicholas Dausi said the party has appealed to its supporters not to engage in any acts of violence as the party believes in discipline.