Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has urged the new commissioners undergoing an induction course to serve the people of Malawi and not political parties.
MEC chairperson Maxon Mbendera said this during the opening of the induction course for the eight newly-elected commissioners yesterday at Malawi Sun Hotel in Blantyre.
“You will face some of the hardest obstacles in your profession. You will have to be professional, honest and objective. We expect you to rise above party ideologies,” he told the new commissioners.
In an interview on the sidelines of the event, Mbendera, who is also a judge of the Malawi Supreme Court of Appeal, emphasized that professionalism and credibility are key to the profession if the country is to hold credible elections.
He rested the credibility of elections on the new commissioners, saying that it is important for them to have integrity and focus so that they are not swayed by other factors.
The European Union-funded Democratic Governor’s Programme (DGP), which was present at the induction course, said MEC has been transparent in all their works with GDP.
DGP team leader Orison Chaponda said: “We have been funding a number of activities geared towards preparing MEC, its commissioners and stakeholders to hold free and fair elections.”
The induction course comes after six of the commissioners underwent one organised by Southern Africa Development Community (Sadc) Electoral Commissions Forum (ECF) in Harare, Zimbabwe alongside their Zimbabwe and Kenya counterparts from June 22 to 24 2016.
MEC media and public relations director Sangwani Mwafulirwa said they sent only six commissioners because the training only allocates six spaces for each country.
The commissioners are Elvy Mtafu, Moffat Banda, Mary Nkosi, Jean Mathanga, Rev Clifford Baloyi, Rev Killion Mgawi, Yahaya M’madi and Linda Kunje.
The induction ends tomorrow.