Malawi leader alleges irregularities

LILONGWE - Malawi’s President Joyce Banda called for an immediate manual audit of this week’s election results, alleging serious irregularities as the electoral commission reported its vote tallying system had collapsed.

“It has come to my attention that there (are) some serious irregularities in the counting and announcement of results in some parts of the country,” she told reporters.

Banda said unofficial partial results showed that some candidates were winning with numbers of votes that exceeded the total numbers registered at the polling centres.

Discarded and tampered ballots had also been discovered, said Banda who is facing her first electoral test since she succeeded her late processor Bingu wa Mutharika two years ago.

She also alleged the communication devices of some polling monitors were deliberately jammed, “thereby limiting the monitors’ ability to effectively carry out their duties”.

“In light of these concerns and concerns emerging from other stakeholders which includes other political parties, I call upon the Malawi Electoral Commission to carry out an immediate manual audit of the whole process,” she said.

Election officials announced earlier that the vote tallying electronic system had collapsed, forcing them to resort to fax and email, and delaying the release of results.

Banda, 64, began her term two years ago as a darling of the West, feted as one of Africa’s rare women leaders, but her government has since been ensnared in a $30 million corruption scandal dubbed “Cashgate”.

Analysts placed her as the favourite despite the scandal and despite competition from her hardline predecessor’s brother, Peter Mutharika.

The 74-year-old Mutharika was allowed to run in the election despite facing a trial for treason.

Comments (3)

its first time to hear a rulling party being cry babies

shame - 23 May 2014

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WERTHJITFCF - 23 May 2014

Madam Banda, have you never heard of an organization called NIKUV. It is too late now as these guys could have assured you a second term in office; for a price of course.

tomasi ndofeni tohwi - 27 May 2014

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