Malawi’s parliament has passed a law that sets May 19 as the date for fresh presidential elections.
Last May’s polls, which handed victory to President Peter Mutharika, were nullified earlier this month by the Constitutional Court citing widespread irregularities.
The challenge was brought by two opposition candidates – Lazarus Chakwera and Saulos Chilima – whose lawyers said some tallying forms had been doctored with Tipp-Ex, and that some polling officials sent in the wrong copy of the results sheet to the main tallying centre.
The new law passed on Monday includes provision for a run-off presidential election to be held if no candidate wins a 50% plus one majority, Malawi24 reports.
It also reports that parliament passed a bill to ensure that the electoral commission’s chairperson is first nominated by the Judicial Service Commission, then appointed by the president on the recommendation of the Public Appointments Committee.
Other members of the electoral commission will be appointed on recommendation of the Public Appointments Committee following nominations from political parties represented in parliament, Malawi24 adds.Agencies