Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has finally set October 17, 2017 for postponed by – elections in three constituencies and three wards which do not currently have representatives in parliament and councils respectively.
The by – elections were initially slated for June 06, 2017 but the electoral body made a surprising u-turn in postponing the elections on grounds that there were no funds for such exercise.
In a statement released by MEC, it is indicated that the development is following the passing of the national budget during the recent parliament seating in the capital Lilongwe.
The statement reveals that “the commission met on July 3 and 4, 2017 in Lilongwe to, among other things, deliberate on the conduct of by-elections in three constituencies and three wards which are currently vacant”.
Before the date of the elections, the Commission is also expected to meet concerned stakeholders in the said areas.
“The Commission will hold stakeholders’ meetings on 16th August, 2017 in all the six areas to explain more details about the electoral calendar”, reads the statement in part.
The vacant constituencies are Lilongwe Msozi North, Lilongwe City South East and Nsanje Lalanje while the wards which have no representatives are Mayani North Ward in Dedza North Constituency, Mtsiliza Ward in Lilongwe City West Constituency and Ndirande Makata Ward in Blantyre Malabada Constituency.
The postponement of the elections raised eyebrows as some quarters were asking why the Commission in the first place announced the date of June 06 without proper financial plan.