By Stanley Nkhondoyachepa
Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) has announced it will conduct another nomination process for aspiring Members of Parliament (MP) for Nkhotakota Central Constituency following the death of a Peoples-Party (PP) candidate for the constituency, Andrew Mlotha.
According to a letter dated April 22, 2019 and signed by MEC Chief Elections Officer, Sam Alfandika, all nominations that were done in Nkhotakota Central are void.
“Take notice that pursuant to Section 47 of the Parliamentary and Presidential Elections Act, I hereby give notice of the death of Andrew Mlotha, a parliamentary candidate for Nkhotakota Central Constituency who died on Monday, April 22, 2019 at Daeyang Hospital in Lilongwe,” reads part of the letter.
The letter declares that following the death, all proceedings in relation to parliamentary elections in Nkhotakota Central have been stopped.
It further states that all nominations that were done in Nkhotakota Central are void.
It, however, adds that all parliamentary candidates who already submitted nomination papers and were declared duly nominated will have just to confirm in writing to the Constituency Returning Officer (CRO) their intention to participate in the parliamentary elections and not submit fresh nomination papers.
Confirming the development in an interview with Malawi News Agency (Mana), MEC Public Relations Officer, Sangwani Mwafulirwa said nomination papers for those wishing to contest for the constituency will be made available through the office of the CRO for Nkhotakota Central from April 25, 2019.
He said fresh nominations for those who want to contest for the seat will be received by the CRO on April 29, from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm.
But Mwafulirwa said elections for councilors in the constituency will not be affected, and that parliamentary elections for the constituency will still be held on May 21, 2019.
Nkhotakota Central Constituency has 28,402 registered voters for the oncoming tripartite elections and had nine aspiring MPs representing the Democratic Progressive Party (DPP), Malawi Congress Party (MCP), UTM, Tikonze People’s Movement (TPM), PP and four independents.-Mana