By Duncan Mlanjira
Malawi Electoral Commission (MEC) reminds all candidates, political parties and the general public that the campaign period for the fresh presidential election ends on Sunday, 21 June at 6:00am.
The campaign period was opened on March 19 under the theme ‘Consolidating Malawi’s Democracy through Peaceful Campaign’ and has run for two months, ending 48 hours before start of polling.
MEC reminding all stakeholders that it is a violation of the law to campaign outside this period and all those found guilty will face the due process of law.
“Candidates and their supporters or agents will not be allowed to campaign or drive around hooting or with loud speakers playing campaign songs or any messages after the deadline,” says a statement from MEC.
“Leaders of various faiths should be on the guard because their worship services can be used for campaign and the clergy is also advised to avoid projecting candidates.
“No member of the clergy should canvass for a candidate during any service of worship after the end of campaign period.”
MEC also says all candidates that are sponsoring football trophies, conducting charity works, distributing relief items should do so before the end of campaign.
The electronic media has also been asked not broadcast or play any campaign messages and songs after the end of the official campaign period and newspapers not to campaign stories and adverts in the Sunday editions.
“The Commission wishes to thank all the contesting candidates, political parties and their followers for relatively maintaining peace and order during this campaign period.
“It is the sincere hope of the Commission that this will prevail during the voting and results announcement period,” said the statement issued by Sam Alfandika, MEC’s Chief Elections Officer.
Meanwhile, the ballot papers and associated polling materials were expected to arrive through Kamuzu International Airport on Emirate flight EK 9757 and the consignment would immediately be
distributed to the constituencies via Councils.
The consignment includes 193 pallets of ballot papers (1 pallet for each constituency); 12 pallets of brown envelopes; 6 pallets of black tamper-evident envelopes C series; 2 pallets of blue tamper evident envelopes B series and 1 pallet of 29 boxes — 28 for District Returning Officer (DRO) and one for National Tally Centre.