The Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has bemoaned violent acts that occurred between Malawi Congress Party (MCP) and Democratic Progressive Party (DPP) supporters during the by-elections campaign period.
Speaking at the announcement of results at Sunbird Mount Soche in Blantyre on Wednesday October 18 2017, MEC chairperson Jane Ansah said, although the commission registered such cases of violence in Nsanje Lalanje specifically, the campaign period which run from September 13 to October 15 was somehow impressive as candidates and political parties focused on issues and not personalities.
She said the trend shows that the country’s understanding of democracy is maturing.
Said Ansah: “However, it is natural in any electoral process that some entities become aggrieved by the conduct of other political players. These by-elections recorded a fair share of complaints and grievances.
“MEC regrets that there were some reported cases of incidences of violence during the campaign period in Nsanje Lalanje. We thank God that those incidences were contained.”
The by-elections took place in three constituencies of Lilongwe Msozi North, Lilongwe City South East, Nsanje Lalanje in Nsanje and three wards of Mayani North in Dedza, Ndirande Malabada in Blantyre, and Mtsiliza in Lilongwe City West Constituency.
In Mtsiliza Ward, there were three candidates with 11 621 voters registered. However, only 1 957 voters turned up for the polls representing a 16.84 percent, and 41 null and void votes registered representing 2.10 percent.
Mayani North Ward had 14 154 registered voters but only 4 372 voters turned, representing a 30.89 percent turnout. The ward registered 73 null and void votes.Ndirande Makata Ward, had four candidates and 13 011 registered voters but only 2 380 voted, representing a 14.93 percent voter turnout.
Lilongwe City South East Constituency had four candidates and 64 315 registered voters but only 11 616 turned out for the polls representing 18.06 percent , while in Nsanje Lalanje, 14 840 out of 25 958 registered voters turned out for the polls, representing a 57.17 percent turnout.
Lilongwe Msozi North Constituency had two candidates with a total of 31 417 registered voters. However, only 12 860 voters turned out, registering a 40.93 percent voter turnout.