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Friday, 27 March 2015 09:46

MEC submits budget to Treasury for by-elections

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Blantyre, March 27: The Malawi Electoral Commission-MEC has submitted a budget to the Treasury for by-elections in four Local Government Wards which fell vacant due to the demise of office holders.

Although he is tight lipped on figures, the institution's Director of Media and Public Relations Sangwani Mwafulirwa has confirmed the development.

The four wards are Luchenza in Thyolo which fell vacant due to the death of Councillor Davie Baleti of the Democratic Progressive Party-DPP on 12th February and Khwawa in Karonga due to the death of Viyezgo Wilson Nyirenda of Peoples Party-PP.

Others are Chibanja Ward in Mzuzu which lost Councilor Charles Nyirongo of PP and Zomba Central ward which was being represented by late Mayor of the Zomba City Joan Mtaja of the DPP.

And Mwafulirwa said the elections are likely to be held after the passing of the 2015/2016 budget.

“Right now we have submitted our budget to the Treasury for approving but I am not disclosing the figure right now because after the submission of budget we also engage discussion with government, so there can also be a probability that they can trim it."

“But from the look of things we shall conduct by-elections after 2015-2016 budgets are passed. Government is likely to put it in the budget,” said Mwafulirwa.

Mwafulirwa reminded the citizenry that by-elections are supposed to be conducted within 60 days after the office falls vacant, but where factors are not permitting to conduct by-elections, he said the electoral body is mandated to go beyond 60 days.

“The law allows MEC to go beyond 60 days if some factors are not allowing going ahead with by-elections. You may wish to know that all four Wards fell vacant due to death. But I can assure the public that by-elections will be conducted once funds are available," stated Mwafulirwa.

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