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Monday, 01 September 2014 21:31

'2014 election challenges rooted from inadequate transportation'

Written by  Brenda Nkosi

Blantyre, September 1: The Malawi Electoral Commission has attributed the 2014 Tripartite Election challenges to inadequate transportation which led to late delivery of electoral materials.

Commissioner Ambassador Rev. Emmanuel Chinkwita Phiri said this during the 2014 elections review meeting for Blantyre District and City Council on Saturday at the Civic Centre.

“The root of the major challenges we had was transportation. Our logistical requirement was 1900 vehicles but we were only given 1300 by government,” said Rev. Phiri.

The commissioner said Government had initially taken out the transport component from their budget as it promised to supply MEC.

“When government realized that they would not be able to meet the 1900 figure, they allowed us to hire 25 vehicles which did not make any huge difference,” Commissioner Phiri said.

Phiri explained that as a result, MEC decided to supply the furthest areas and left out the cities because they thought transportation would not be as difficult in Blantyre and Lilongwe.

“We had serious cases in Blantyre and Lilongwe because riots started because voters were disappointed by the unavailability of voting materials,” Phiri said.

He admitted that the 2014 tripartite elections were not an easy job and thanked God that nobody in Blantyre died as lives of many people were at stake.

Traditional Authority Machinjiri thanked MEC for taking a bold step to learn from the 2014 elections challenges.

“We commend MEC for meeting different stakeholders to review the just ended elections. We can only do better if we are able to acknowledge our mistakes and try to learn from them,” said Machinjiri.

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