Malawi News Agency (Lilongwe)

27 May 2014

Malawi: Election Drama Continues - DPP Serves MEC With Contempt of Charges

Blantyre — The Democratic Progressive Front (DPP) has served Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) Chairman Maxon Mbendera with contempt of court charges.

In an order granted at the High Court by Justice Potani, it lists Mbendera as the first contemnor and and seven other commissioners as fellow conteminors in the contempt charges.

The order says the applicants Friday Jumbe, Amosi Mailosi, David Kazinja and Allan Ngumuya have permission to start contempt of court charges against MEC.

MEC announced Monday evening that it would proceed with recounting of votes countrywide as part of the verification process of votes cast in the Tripartite Elections on 20 May.

Mbendera had indicated that MEC would seek a waiver from the court to extend the mandatory eight day period for the announcing of results. This was after it was reported that the Malawi Congress Party (MCP) had vacated all injunctions gagging MEC that the DPP and others had taken.

The news of the recount was welcomed by the MCP, United Democratic Front (UDF) and Peoples Party (PP) who had lodged numerous complaints with MEC on alleged irregulalities and anomalies bordering on 'rigging.'

Other independent players like Centre for Development of People (Cedep) and Centre for Human Rights and Rehabilitation (CHRR) had also welcomed the recount news and had urged MEC to be firm in carrying out its duties and 'deliver election results that live up to the country's hard-worn democracy.'

It remains to be seen how MEC will proceed now.

As we went to press, Mana reporters confirmed that Mbendera had jut gone out of the tally centre at COMESA Hall in Blantyre.

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