As Malawi’s Parliament meets for a midyear budget review next month, Members of Parliament (MPs) have been asked to lobby for increasing budgetary allocation to the Electoral Commission (EC) to enable it to conduct successful tripartite elections.
Speaking during a recent consultative meeting on proposed ward demarcations in the eastern Malawi district of Balaka, commissioner the Reverend Emmanuel Chimkwita-Phiri said the commission will need more money to run the tripartite elections if they are to have more polling centres.
“People countrywide are proposing that voting should start from six [in the morning] to four o’clock in the evening so that there should be more time for vote counting; hence, the proposal to have more centres. What we are saying is that this is not a problem if the commission has enough financial resources. We, however, need additional budgetary allocation to run our activities,” said Chimkwita-Phiri.
Budget and Finance Committee of Parliament member, George Nnensa, who is also MP for Balaka South Constituency and president of Mafunde party, assured the committee that they will ensure that the proposal is addressed.
“Increasing budget allocation to the EC cannot be ignored if the country is to fare well in its first threesome elections. We will try to lobby for more money to the commission so that they should prepare well for these elections,” said Nnensa.
He called on legislators to support the proposal to increase funding to the commission.